Advertisement

Measures of Staff Morale and Organizational Environment as Indicators of Program Change in an Institution for Youthful Offenders

  • N. Dickon Reppucci
  • J. Terry Saunders

Abstract

With our growing experience in the area of behavioral treatment programs in human service organizations (e.g., mental hospitals, juvenile correctional facilities, schools), it has become apparent that a more ecological perspective (e.g., Reppucci, 1977; Willems, 1974), with its emphasis on understanding the complex interrelationships and interdependences within and between person-behavior-environment systems, is necessary for the successful implementation of behavior modification programs in these settings. In 1974, as an initial attempt to examine some major implementation issues that confront the change agent using behavior modification techniques in human service organizations, the authors, both behaviorally oriented community psychologists, wrote an article on the “Social Psychology of Behavior Modification: Problems of Implementation in Natural Settings.” One of the issues we discussed was the Problem of Two Populations. In brief, we argued (1974) that the behavioral consultant can influence the behavior of the client population only by modifying the behavior of staff mediators. We further noted that consultants usually have little control over the most powerful contingencies of staff reinforcement-salaries, promotions, job security, and benefits. Yet staff are clearly a vital link in the service delivery chain within any human service organization. If a behavioral program affects them adversely, it is possible and perhaps even likely that the quality of care to residents will suffer as a consequence. To the degree that a behavioral program strengthens positive aspects of their work experience, both staff and residents should benefit. Nevertheless, the area of employee job satisfaction has been woefully ignored in human service organizations (Sarata, 1977; Sarata & Jeppesen, 1977).1

Keywords

Community Psychology Social Climate Task Identity Behavioral Program Time Interaction Effect 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. Dean, C. W., & Reppucci, N. D. Juvenile correctional institutions. In D. Glaser] (Ed.), Handbook of criminology. Chicago: Rand McNally, 19Google Scholar
  2. Goldenberg, I. I. Build me a mountain: Youth, poverty and the creation of new settings. Cambridge, Mass.: M.I.T. Press, 1971.Google Scholar
  3. Hackman, R., & Lawler, E. Employee reactions to job characteristics. Journal of Applied Psychology Monograph, 1971, 55, 259–286.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Katz, D., & Kahn, R. The social psychology of organizations (2nd ed.). New York: Wiley, 1978.Google Scholar
  5. Lipton, D., Martinson, R., & Wilks, J. The effectiveness of correctional treatment: A survey of treatment evaluation studies. New York: Praeger, 1975.Google Scholar
  6. Moos, R. H. The assessment of the social climates of correctional institutions. Journal on Research in Crime and Delinquency, 1968, 5, 174–188.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Moos, R. H. Evaluating treatment environments: A social ecological approach. New York: Wiley, 1974.Google Scholar
  8. Moos, R. H. Evaluating correctional and community settings. New York: Wiley, 1975.Google Scholar
  9. Moos, R. H. Evaluating educational environments. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 1979. (a)Google Scholar
  10. Moos, R. H. Improving social settings by social climate measurement and feedback. In R. F. Munoz, L. R. Snowden, & J. G. Kelly (Eds.), Social and psychological research in community settings. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 1979. (b)Google Scholar
  11. Moos, R. H., & Houts, P. S. Assessment of the social atmospheres of psychiatric wards. Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 1968, 23, 595–604.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Moos, R. H., & Houts, P. S. Differential effects of the social atmosphere of psychiatric wards. Human Relations, 1970, 23, 47–60.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Pierce, W. D., Trickett, E. J., & Moos, R. H. Changing ward atmosphere through staff discussion of the perceived ward environment. Archives of General Psychiatry, 1972, 26, 35–41.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  14. Porter, L., Lawler, E., & Hackman, R., Behavior in organizations. New York: McGraw-Hill, 1975.Google Scholar
  15. Reppucci, N. D. The social psychology of institutional change: General principles for intervention. American Journal of Community Psychology, 1973, 1, 330–341.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  16. Reppucci, N. D. Implementation issues for the behavior modifier as institutional change agent. Behavior Therapy, 1977, 8, 594–605.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Reppucci, N. D., & Saunders, J. T. Social psychology of behavior modification: Problems of implementation in natural settings. American Psychologist, 1974, 29, 649–660.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Reppucci, N. D., & Saunders, J. T. Innovation and implementation in a state training school for adjucated delinquents. In R. Nelson & D. Yates (Eds.), Innovation and implementation in public organizations. Lexington, Mass.: D. C. Heath, 1978.Google Scholar
  19. Sarason, S. B. The psychological sense of community: Prospects for a community psychology. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 1974.Google Scholar
  20. Sarason, S. B., Levine, M., Goldenberg, I. I., Cherlin, D., & Bennett, E. Psychology in community settings: Clinical, educational, vocational, social aspects. New York: Wiley, 1966.Google Scholar
  21. Sarata, B. P. V. The job satisfactions of individuals working with the mentally retarded. Unpublished doctoral dissertation, Yale University, 1972.Google Scholar
  22. Sarata, B. P. V. Job characteristics, work satisfactions and task involvement as correlates of service delivery strategies. American Journal of Community Psychology, 1977, 5, 99–110.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Sarata, B. P. V., & Jeppesen, J. Job design and staff satisfaction in human service settings. American Journal of Community Psychology, 1977, 5, 229–236.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Smith, P., Kendall, L., & Hulin, C. The measurement of satisfaction in work and retirement. Chicago: Rand McNally, 1969.Google Scholar
  25. Wilkinson, L., & Reppucci, N. D., Perceptions of social climate among participants in token economy and non-token economy cottages in a juvenile correctional institution. American Journal of Community Psychology, 1973, 1, 36–43.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Willems, E. P. Behavioral technology and behavioral ecology. Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis, 1974, 7, 151–165.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1982

Authors and Affiliations

  • N. Dickon Reppucci
    • 1
  • J. Terry Saunders
    • 2
  1. 1.Psychology DepartmentUniversity of VirginiaCharlottesvilleUSA
  2. 2.Offenders Aid and Restoration of the United StatesCharlottesvilleUSA

Personalised recommendations