The Effect of assertion training on self-esteem and behavior of female high school students

This project is concerned with the effects of assertion training on self-esteem and assertive behavior. This project supports the hypothesis that assertiveness training might be an effective technique for influencing individual attitudes and behavior. The particular focus of this study is on four female students of a suburban high school in Los Angeles County, California. Counseling and training took place within a group setting. The following test instruments were used to measure change: A test devised by Alberti and Emmons (1975) for measuring self-concept was administered to the group before counseling. The Coopersmith Self-Esteem Inventory (App.A) and the Rathus 30-Item Schedule for Assessing Assertive Behavior were administered midway into the sessions. All three tests were given at the end of counseling. Observations were made weekly as to any changes that emerged within the group along with a questionnaire assessing the students’ opinions of the group. The test results indicate an improvement in self-esteem and assertiveness. Personal observations of interactions within the group seem to support these findings. With certain individuals, change can be noted within the group process more readily than with others. However, no concrete conclusions can be drawn from this study because of the size of the sample and the lack of a control group. As an aid for more comprehensive studies in the future, this project serves to point out the potential assertive training has in influencing self-esteem and behavior.