Date of Conferral
Gerald G. Griffin, Ph.D.
This research examined two hypotheses involving mentally retarded students. The first hypothesis posited that an Experimental Group of subjects receiving intensive, individua~. short-term supportive counseling will display a higher rating score improvement on the five personality dimensions of confidence, maturity, self-discipline, assertiveness and independence following this counseling than will a Control Group of subjects receiving no such counseling. The second hypothesis posited that this same Experimental Group of subjects, aft~r receiving this counseling, will be distinguished by significantly higher job stability, defined as continuous and successful employment for six months following the end of counseling, than will the Control Group of subjects receiving no such counseling. To test these hypotheses, forty mentally retarded students were drawn at random from the Bobby Dodd Workshop for the Mentally Retarded; twenty were assigned to the Experimental Group, twenty to the Control Group, with members of both groups being matched as similarly as . . ~ Patricia A. Griffin possible regarding sex, age, I.Q. and race. At the beginning of this study, members of both the Experimental and Control Groups were rated by a qualified, independent rater on the five personality dimensions of confidence, maturity, self-discipline, assertiveness and independence. The ratinqs were made on a five point scale: a rating of 1 denoted poor; 2 denoted fair; 3 denoted average; 4 denoted good; and 5 denoted excellent. Following these pre-counseling ratings, subjects of the Control Group continued the normal training regimen of the Bobby Dodd Workshop. Subjects of the Experimental Group also con~inued this training,but in addition, underwent individual counseling twice a week for a six month period with a counseling psychologist who's counseling approach dealt with the conscious affective concerns of the subjects in an understanding, specific and exploratory manner. Following the six month counseling period, members of both the Experimental and Control Groups were rated a second time on the five personality dimensions. Comparison of postcounseling group r~ting score increases over pre-counseling group rating scores on each of the five personality dimensio~s were then made between the two groups. This comparison disclosed that th~ Experimental Group displayed a much higher rating score improvement than the Control Group on each of the five personality dimensions, thereby supporting the first hypothesis tested. Following the second perso1~ality dimension rating, y ' P~tricia A. Griffin efforts were made to place the subjects of both groups in employment. Six months later, a follow-up study was made to discover which subjects were still employed. Each subject was rated a score of 2 if he was employed, 1 if he was not. The rating scores obtained by the subjects in each group were statistically compared using "t"-tests. There was a significant difference in the rating scores of the two groups of subjects in favor of the Experimental Group, thereby supporting the second hypothesis