Graduation Year


Document Type




Degree Name

Master of Science (M.S.)

Degree Granting Department

Child and Family Studies

Major Professor

Kwang-Sun Cho Blair, Ph.D., BCBA-D

Committee Member

Kimberly Crosland, Ph.D., BCBA-D

Committee Member

Raymond Miltenberger Ph.D., BCBA-D


behavior skills training, juvenile justice, negative interactions, staff training


Juvenile residential facilities are punitive and restrictive limiting youth opportunity to learn and engage in adaptive behavior. Staff training is necessary to reduce the punishment-based behavior management practices that are often in place and to increase reinforcement of appropriate behavior. Pyramidal training is a cost-effective and efficient strategy to train multiple levels of staff of behavior analytic skills. In this study a pyramidal training approach was used to train juvenile residential level 1 staff to deliver training to level 2 staff, using behavioral skills training (BST) procedures and to implement self-monitoring procedures to improve their practices. A multiple baseline across participants design was used to examine the impact of pyramidal staff training on level 1 staff (supervisor) procedural fidelity of delivering training to level 2 staff (floor staff) and on level 2 staff delivery of behavior specific praise (BSP) and negative interactions. Changes in staff’s perception of problem behavior in youth they serve were also examined. The results indicated that the pyramidal training was successful in improving supervisor procedural fidelity of conducting BST and resulted in increases in floor staff’s use BSP and decreases in negative interactions. Furthermore, the staff’s perceived levels of youth’s junk behavior and major problem behavior decreased as a result.