Effects of Research in Educational Psychology on Learning
Braden R. Andrews
The purpose of the study conducted by Pedro Blanco and Dee Ray was to examine the effects of Child-Centered Play Therapy or CCPT on 1st graders who were academically challenged. Forty-three academically at-risk children were selected from Title I schools for the study. Students were deemed academically at-risk if they had been held back, did not perform well on stadnarized test, or if they were in custody of the state.
The Young Children’s Achievement Test (YCAT), a comprehensive test that measures early academic achievement levels in children ages 4-8, was used as the testing instrument. After parental consent was received, each participant was administered the YCAT as a pre-test. Once administering the test, the students were randomly placed into two groups- the wait list control group or the Child-Centered Play Therapy experimental group. The experimental group consisted of twenty-one students that received CCTP for eight weeks. The therapy was administered twice a week lasting thirty minutes. Therapy was given inside school playrooms. Therapists were required to include both nonverbal and verbal skills while administering therapy. The control group consisted of twenty students that did not received therapy during the eight weeks. After eight weeks, all of the participants were given the YCAT again.
The results indicated that the experimental group benefited from therapy. The experimental group had an average of 7.28 point increase on the YCAT scores compared to the 3 point increase for the control group. Also, 36% of the children in the experimental group improved from an academically at-risk child to a normal functioning student in comparison with only 29% of the control group. These results support the hypothesis that academically at risk children benefit from Child...