Peer-mediated interventions are being used increasingly with a variety of populations. This study examined the impact of a peer-helper intervention on the low rates of prosocial interactions of three elementary-school children. Two peers from each child's classroom were trained as helpers to increase the social interactions of the socially isolated children. A multiple-baseline across-subjects design was used to demonstrate the impact of the intervention, and a within-subject A-B-A withdrawal design was used to assess maintenance. Behavioral observations during recess periods indicated that positive interactions with peer helpers and other classmates increased during intervention and were maintained in withdrawal and follow-up phases. Increases in positive interactions generalized to a second recess setting in which the peer-helper intervention was not introduced. The positive social interactions of all subjects reached social-validation levels of comparison groups of peers in the observation settings. Classroom sociometric assessment and teacher and self-report measures provided variable support for the effectiveness of intervention.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Developmental and Educational Psychology
- Clinical Psychology
- Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)