Perceptions of the school psychologist's role with regard to real behavior and ideal behavior

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Authors
Michael, Stana J.
Advisor
Miller, Ebert L.
Issue Date
1981
Keyword
Degree
Thesis (D. Ed.)
Department
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Abstract

The purpose of this study was to investigate various role-definer groups' perceptions of the school psychologist's role with regard to real behavior and ideal behavior. The role-definer groups were: special education teacher, special education director, elementary school teacher, elementary school principal and school psychologist. An instrument was developed and piloted on randomly selected members from each role-definer group throughout the states of Indiana and Michigan. Upon revision, the 15-item instrument in questionnaire form was sent to 50 randomly selected members from each role-definer group in each state. A total of 325 completed questionnaires (65%) were returned for inclusion in the analyses. The subjects responded to each of the 15 items with a Likert-type response on a 7-point scale.An analysis of variance with contrast was utilized to test for any differences between the school psychologist and each of the other role-definer groups in how they perceived the real role functions and the ideal role functions of the school psychologist. There were some significant differences, primarily related to direct service activities vs. consultant-type activities.A one way analysis of variance was utilized to test for any differences between the Indiana role-definer groups and the Michigan role-definer groups in how they perceived the real role functions and the ideal role functions of the school psychologist. There were some significant differences, primarily related to the specialization of expected services from the school psychologist. It appeared that less specialization was expected from the Michigan school psychologist than from the Indiana school psychologist, possibly due in part to the difference in administrative models utilized by the states.A correlated t-test was utilized to test for any differences in how each role-definer group perceived the school psychologist's real behavior compared to the school psychologist's ideal behavior. Significant differences were found for 70 of the 75 possible hypotheses (i.e., 15 items x 5 role-definer groups). It appeared that, for the most part, role-definer groups preferred that the school psychologist function differently.