Date of Conferral







Kimberlee Bonura


Individuals with intellectual developmental disabilities occasionally exhibit challenging behaviors through forms of aggression. Interventions, such as cognitive behavioral therapy, and applied behavioral analysis, have all been shown to be effective in reducing symptoms of aggression. This quantitative study used a secondary analysis of clinical records from an agency that provides day treatment services for adults with intellectual disabilities. To assess the effectiveness of a mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) program in reducing aggression in this population, 18 individuals with various levels of intellectual disabilities participated in an 8-week MBSR while an additional 18 participants served as the wait list control group and received the same intervention soon after the study was completed. The study examined whether a mindfulness-based intervention can reduce aggression based on the Modified Overt Aggression Scale (MOAS) and also increase participants' awareness of meditation based on the Child Adolescent Mindfulness Measure (CAMM). A 2x2 ANOVA was used to determine differences between measures, pretest and posttest. Results indicated no differences in aggression before and after the administration of the mindfulness-based intervention for either the experimental or control group. However, CAMM scores indicated that participants came to understand the concept of mindfulness, even though this did not yield measurable changes in their behavioral outcomes. This study will inform clinicians about mindfulness in programs for adults with disabilities and research indicates that MBSR is a program which is beneficial for adults with developmental disabilities and may serve as an additional coping mechanism in dealing with aggression.