The Repository @ St. Cloud State

Open Access Knowledge and Scholarship

Date of Award


Culminating Project Type

Starred Paper

Degree Name

Special Education: M.S.


Special Education


School of Education

First Advisor

Bradley Kaffar

Second Advisor

Marc Markell

Third Advisor

Hsueh-I Lo

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Keywords and Subject Headings

Social skills training


Children with significant behavioral and social skills deficits are at risk for academic failure and for identification as a special education student with emotional and/or behavioral disorders (EBD) (Newcomb, Bukowski, & Pattee, 1993; Walker, Ramsey, & Gresham, 2004). According to Deshler, Ellis, and Lenz (1996), students with poor social skills have limited opportunities to learn, which negatively affects their self-concept. Children with deficiencies in social skills are at greater risk for juvenile delinquency and adult psychopathology than socially competent children (Moffitt, Caspi, Harrington, & Milne, 2002; Newcomb et al., 1993; Patterson, Reid, & Dishion, 1992).

Given these poor outcomes, the teaching of social skills should be an integral part of programs for students who experience behavioral challenges (Johns, Crowley, & Guetzloe, 2005). A number of research syntheses and meta-analyses have been published on this topic, but the results are still not consistent. The purpose of this starred paper was to review the literature that examines the effectiveness of social skills training for elementary students having behavioral issues. In Chapter 1, I summarize briefly the findings of previous meta-analyses on social skills training, then in Chapter 2, I review recent literature that was not included in these meta-analyses, and lastly in Chapter 3, I discuss these research findings, future recommendations, and implications.



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