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Program Design

Please help me complete a comprehensive plan for program design and evaluation using participatory research processes.

We Care Shelter provides shelter and various services to help homeless parents with children. Many of the children have exhibited extreme behavior problems, including hitting, biting and destruction of property. The shelter understands that the children are likely to be upset by the homeless situation, but is seeking hope in ensuring the safety of others in the shelter.

Separate your plan into sections related to each step of the program design and evaluation process. For each step, explain its purpose and identify tools that you recommend be used to accomplish that step.

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*Program design and evaluation

The program design will be based on an operant behavioral technique referred to as behavioral contracting. Behavioral contracting is defined as any type of agreement that can be verbal or written by which one or both partners agree to a set of behaviors related to the care of a patient (Hartz, Brennan, Aulakh, & Estrin, 2010, p. 348). As Hartz et al. note, behavioral contracting was originally used in educational settings to enhance compliance and multiple behavioral problems among children and youth. Since then, it has been utilized in both medical and mental health settings to improve treatment and facilitate health outcomes. Behavioral contracting has been applied to: (a) promote smoking cessation, (b) control hypertension and diabetes, (c) with mental health patients in psychiatric settings, and (d) to treat substance abuse (p. 349).The main components of behavioral contracting are the use of positive behavioral terms to modify and/or alter negative behaviors. According to Stuart (1971), the techniques of behavioral contracts were used to strengthen the control of family and school over the behavior of delinquents. He notes that behavioral contracting is based upon four assumptions: (1) receipt of positive reinforcement in interpersonal exchanges is a privilege rather than a right, (2) effective interpersonal arguments are governed by the norm of reciprocity, (3) the value of an interpersonal exchange is directly related to the range, rate and magnitude of positive reinforcements mediated by the exchange, and (4) rules create freedom in interpersonal exchange.

*A good behavioral contract contains 5 elements:

- Must detail the privileges which each expects to gain after fulfilling the responsibilities and privileges (e.g. free time with friends, spending money, choice of hair styles, and use of the family car, etc).
- Details the responsibilities essential to securing each privilege.
- A good behavioral contract is a system of sanctions for failure to meet responsibilities.
- A bonus clause is inserted that answers possible reinforcement for compliance with the terms of the contract.
- A well executed behavioral contract indicates that each member of the family is assured of receiving the minimum level of possible reinforcement (privileges) necessary to sustain his or her participation in the interaction.

The behavioral contracting system has been shown to be effective for a number of children in several presenting situations. For instance, Carns and Carns (2010) explain the contracting ...

Solution Summary

This soluiton provides a comprehensive program design and evaluation using participatory reearch.

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