Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Psychology (PsyD)


Graduate Department of Clinical Psychology


The effects of the Oregon Leadership Development Program on the assertive and aggressive behaviors of participants were measured by the scales of .the Interpersonal Behavior Survey (IBS). The program, administered by Oregon Leadership Institute (OLI), uses an experientially oriented laboratory format which includes training group (T-group) participation, brief lectures, and various interpersonal and group exercises. The program seeks to increase the interpersonal effectiveness of participants. No previous formal evaluation has been done on the OLI program and prior laboratory learning studies have not examined assertive and aggressive behaviors as outcome variables. Participants included adults who were employed by a variety of business, government, and professional organizations. The study used two treatment groups comprised of 19 male participants who attended OLI program #37 and 19 male participants who attended OLI program #38. The quasi-experimental design employed a non-equivalent comparison group comprised of 19 male participants who had not attended an OLI program and who were roughly matched on the basis of gender and occupation. All participants were administered an IBS pretest and posttest, separated by a 29-day interval. A paired samples i-test and one-way analysis of covariance (ANCOVA) were used to evaluate the two hypotheses. Data provided partial support for the first hypothesis that program participants would report increased assertive behaviors, as measured by the eight assertiveness scales of the IBS. Significant increases were found on the following scales and measured behaviors: (a) Defending Assertiveness - standing up for one's rights, (b) Frankness - communicating one's feelings and opinions even in the face of opposition, (c) Initiating Assertiveness - expressing one's opinions and suggestions while taking a leadership role in groups, and (d) General Assertiveness, Rational - demonstrating a broad range of assertive behaviors. Data failed to support the second hypothesis that program participants would report less aggressive behaviors, as measured by the seven aggressiveness scales of the IBS. The observed changes appear consistent with the OLI program objectives and highlight the potential usefulness of the IBS assertiveness scales as outcome measures in laboratory learning research. Possible application of laboratory training to increase interpersonal competence and effectiveness of missionaries is discussed.

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