University of Tasmania
whole_BeaumontSallyAnn2010_thesis.pdf (5.78 MB)

Conflict, social communication deficits and behavioural inflexibility in primary school children

Download (5.78 MB)
posted on 2023-05-26, 23:10 authored by Beaumont, SA
Literature review The problem of disruptive behaviour displayed by primary school children has been an issue in schools for over the last three decades, but has recently resurfaced again as a major social concern. As public concern has risen, so have expectations that this problem area should be managed more effectively by school staff. This review will explore, within a school context, the link between disruptive externalized behaviours and social communication deficits, which are regarded as a key antecedent to disruptive externalized behaviours. In particular, the origins of social communication deficits, displayed by non pathological primary school children, will be explored in order to understand the types of interventions that may be effective for these children. A review of evidence-based social skills training programs and their related successful outcomes will be explored and this will be followed by an analysis of gaps in the research in order to determine future research areas. Empirical report Previous research has focused on the close association between poor social communication skills and behavioural difficulties. However, little attempt has so far been made to examine this relationship in primary school aged children who live in socioeconomically disadvantaged communities. In particular there is limited research on the impact of universally presented social communication skills interventions on this group of children. This study explores the notion that children who live in socioeconomically disadvantaged communities and who display disruptive behaviours in school need specially designed social skills intervention programs to meet their specific requirements. Further, this study explores the hypothesis that a universal school-based, teacher-delivered social communication skills intervention, not requiring parental support, will decrease levels of problematic behaviour. Results showed a non-significant decrease in children's levels of problematic behaviours in the Playground environment, but showed a significant reduction in their levels of problematic behaviour in a classroom environment. Gender and school levels appear to have a moderating effect on outcomes. This study concluded that in the short term at least, the type of intervention carried out may have had some beneficial effect for the participants, but this was not sustained over a longer time period. Implications for the use of specific interventions to this population and suggestions for future research are also discussed.


Publication status

  • Unpublished

Rights statement

Copyright 2009 the author Thesis (MPsych(Clin))--University of Tasmania, 2010. Includes bibliographical references

Repository Status

  • Open

Usage metrics

    Thesis collection


    No categories selected


    Ref. manager