Chapter 1 Introduction
Chapter 2 Description
Chapter 3 Evaluation
Chapter 4 Summary, Conclustions, Recommendations

CHAPTER 3

 

EVALUATION OF THE PROJECT

 

Evaluating the Program Development

Overview

The first hypothesis was that a suitable program would be developed within the time frames of the proposal. The acceptance of the first hypothesis was based on the development described in chapter 2 and on the securing of and development of the four measures described below: (1) a review by a member of the director's doctor of ministry committee; (2) a review by an expert in criminal justice ministry; (3) the documents of the program; and (4) five evaluation instruments.

 

Review by Committee Member

The director worked with Alan Jackson who was a member of the director's doctor of ministry committee. With prior approval, the director sent drafts of the program lesson plans and handouts to Jackson for review prior to implementation: a copy of the letter that accompanied the drafts was placed in appendix 1, marked item #1. After receiving and reviewing the drafts, Jackson gave approval by phone on 16 July 1996.

 

Review by Expert in Criminal Justice Ministry

The director worked with Vance Drum, senior chaplain at the Eastham State Prison in Lovelady, Texas. With prior approval, the director sent drafts of the program lesson plans and handouts to Drum for review prior to implementation. The director asked Drum for a written response that also included Drum's qualifications as an expert in criminal justice ministry. On 17 July 1996, Drum responded with a letter containing an evaluation of the program sessions. Drum's letter of response was placed in appendix 1, marked item #2.

 

The Documents of the Program

The program lesson plan drafts that were sent to Jackson and Drum were finalized. With the finalizing prior to implementation, the lesson plans and overheads themselves became the third measure of the validation of the first hypothesis, as the lesson plans and overheads represented the essence of the program that was given to the men in the experimental group. The lesson plans were placed in appendix 2, and the overheads were placed in appendix 3.

 

Five Evaluation Instruments

The fourth measure of the first hypothesis was finding and developing the evaluation instruments used throughout the program. Five instruments were used: two validated questionnaires were used, and three other questionnaires were developed by the director specially suited to measure various portions of the program.

The two validated instruments were selected prior to program implementation: one, Stokes and Lautenschlater's Counselor Response Questionnaire (CRQ)[97] was used in its entirety; the other, part of Carkhuff's "Responding: Knowledge and Skills Assessment" was used in part, but the title was changed to Responding Questionnaire (RQ).[98] Both of these were used as pretests and posttests, and both were approved by director's committee chairman as suitable assessment instruments prior to being used.

In addition to the committee chairman's validation of the CRQ and the RQ, other validations were considered of these instruments. Professional validations of the CRQ were placed in the background information at the beginning of appendix 5 under the sub-heading: "validation studies." The RQ assessment was considered validated because of the repeated publication of Carkhuff's model for training in helping skills, and this assumption was approved by the director's committee chairman prior to implementation. The RQ and background information related to the RQ were placed in appendix 6.

The director developed three instruments to aid in data collection during the various stages of the program implementation: one, a Preprogram Background Questionnaire (PBQ); two, a Postprogram Interview Questionnaire (PIQ); and three, a Postprogram Helpee Follow-up Questionnaire (PHFQ). The PBQ was used to gather some sociological data to help divide the experimental and control groups, and that was placed in appendix 4. The PIQ was used to gather data from the experimental group after the last program session and in a one-on-one setting, and that was placed in appendix 9. The PHFQ was used to gather data from the men in the Christian congregation who had been the recipients of the participants' helping efforts, and that was placed in appendix 10. All three of the instruments were developed and submitted to the director's committee chairman prior to implementation, and all three were approved by director's committee chairman as suitable assessment instruments prior usage.

 

Evaluating the Program Enlistment

Overview

The acceptance of the second hypothesis was based upon two factors. The first was the enlistment described in chapter 2, and the second was the determination and development of three measures described below: (1) the effect of the advertisements and announcements; (2) the experimental and control group rosters and worksheets; and (3) the posttesting of the control group.

 

Effect of Advertisement and Announcements

From the advertisement and announcements, sixty-seven men were nominated to participate. After the nominees were screened and invitations were given to the sixty-seven men, all of them showed up for the pretesting stage of the project. When sixty-seven men had been enlisted and had arrived for the pretesting, this arrival indicated that part of the second hypothesis was fulfilled.

 

Experimental and Control Group Worksheets and Rosters

The director developed three data collection instruments. Two of the instruments were worksheets used to record the data from the CRQ and RQ pretesting and posttesting of both groups. The third instrument was a basic attendance roster developed to chronicle the attendance of the experimental and control groups. Copies of the CRQ and RQ data collection worksheets were placed in appendix 11, marked respectively as items #1 and #2. A copy of the attendance roster was placed in appendix 12, marked item #2.

After the pretesting, the CRQ and RQ scores of each of the sixty-seven men were placed on the data collection worksheets bearing the name of the participants. That was done for both the experimental and control groups.

As attendance was kept throughout the program sessions of the experimental group, twenty-seven of the participants stayed with the program. The basic attendance roster for the experimental group indicated who attended and who was absent. The attendance on the roster was reflected in the pastoral observations and reflections collected in appendix 8 and that were summarized above in chapter 2 under the subsection, summarization of daily lessons.

At the end of the administration of the program sessions to the experimental group, the posttests were given to the experimental group. The posttest scores from the CRQ and RQ were placed on the data collection worksheets of each individual man.[99]

A separate list was maintained of the control group. After the experimental group was given the program and the posttests, the control group was recalled on the following Saturday, 28 September 1996. The control group attendance roster indicated that six men were absent, and a follow-up indicated that the six men had moved from the prison and were no longer available to participate. The remaining twenty-eight men were given the posttests. When twenty-eight men in the original control group showed up to complete posttesting, that arrival indicated that part of the second hypothesis was fulfilled with respect to the two groups' attendance throughout the implementation of the program.

 

Posttesting the Control Group

When the control group was recalled on 28 September 1996, they were given the CRQ and RQ as posttests. The posttesting of the control group was the last phase of the program that involved the experimental and control group participants.

Therefore, the second hypothesis was fulfilled in three phases: when the affect of advertising drew sixty-seven men, when the experimental group and the control group attendance rosters and worksheets indicated attendance, and with the administration of the CRQ and RQ as posttests. Twenty-seven men in the experimental group and twenty-eight men in the control group stayed with the program from beginning to end. That number of men with the data collected was deemed sufficient to justify an evaluation.

Three reasons were found to accept the second hypothesis. The first reason was the enlistment described in chapter 2. The second was the general effect of advertisement. The third reason was that the attendance rosters, worksheets, and posttesting indicated that fifty-five men had remained with the entire program. Therefore, the second hypothesis was accepted in that the men remained with the program.

 

Evaluating the Program Implementation

Overview

The third hypothesis was that the program would increase the inmate's ability to use several helping skills. Six methods of the evaluation of the program implementation indicated the accomplishment of the third hypothesis. The six methods were divided into two parts: (1) two professional evaluations; and (2) four statistical evaluations.

The professional evaluations included: (1) an evaluation of a program session by a professional chaplain, and (2) the project director's pastoral observations and reflections. After discussing how the final scores were adjusted to compensate for absentees, the four statistical evaluations included analyses of four program instruments: (1) the counselor response questionnaire statistical analysis, (2) the responding questionnaire statistical analysis, (3) the postprogram interview questionnaire analysis, and (4) the postprogram helpee follow-up questionnaire analysis.

 

Professional Evaluations

Professional Chaplain

Alex Taylor sat in on the seventh and last program session. His evaluation indicated that part of the third hypothesis was fulfilled in that a program had been implemented that improved the inmate's ability to use some helping skills.

Taylor was the regional chaplain for the Texas Department of Criminal Justice. He was asked to view a program session and write an evaluation based upon the session's objective and upon his experience. The director asked if Taylor would respond with a letter offering his evaluation and outlining his qualifications as an expert in criminal justice ministry.

Taylor arrived on 21 September 1996. The director gave Taylor a copy of the program lesson plans for that day and a copy of the handouts that were given to the men that day. Several days after the program, the director received from Taylor a letter and evaluation on 10 October 1996, and that letter and evaluation were placed in appendix 1, marked item #3.

 

Pastoral Observations and Reflections on Implementation

After each daily session of the program, the director took notes on his observations and reflections on various aspects of the program and about the responses of the men in the experimental group. The pastoral observations and reflections indicated that part of the third hypothesis was fulfilled in the chronicle of the men's participation and growth throughout the program. The observations and reflections were placed in appendix 8.

The observations and reflections detailed how the presentation of the lesson plans and overheads affected the participants in the program and as well as the director. Some of the aspects observed and reflected upon were how the director presented various parts of the program, his feelings about the presentation, how the men in general responded to various parts of the program, and the unexpected responses or distractions that arose in the program. The sum of the director's observations and reflections indicated that the men not only learned some empathy skills but that they enjoyed the whole process and wished that the program could continue so that they could continue to refine their empathic skills.


Adjusting the Pretest and Posttest CRQ Scores

As was seen in chapter 2, the Preprogram Background Questionnaire (PBQ) and the Counselor Response Questionnaire (CRQ) were used in the determination of the experimental and control groups from among the sixty-seven men. Thirty-four men were placed in the control group, and thirty-three men were placed in the experimental group.

After the posttesting of both groups was finished, the director recorded that several men from both groups did not remain to finish the posttesting. During the program, six men dropped out of the experimental group for various reasons. The men who dropped out were from a variety of sociological categories, and their CRQ scores were dropped from the experimental group's preprogram statistical calculations: 1 YBA (25), 1 NBNA (14), 1 WNA (21), 2 NWA (38, 32), and 1 YHNA (23).[100]

After seven weeks, six men had left the prison who had been in the control group. Those men were from a variety of sociological categories, and their CRQ scores were dropped from the control group's preprogram statistical calculations: 1 YBA (32), 1 YWNA (34), 1 YHA (29), 1 NBNA (24), 1 NBA (21), and 1 NWNA (28).[101]

Since twenty-seven men in the experimental group had finished the program and twenty-eight men in the control group had completed the CRQ posttesting, one other man's score was deleted from the control group to allow both groups the same number of observations. The score chosen was a midrange score from the group of black-aggravated men who had had no regular visits during the month: NBA (28). The midrange score was chosen for two reason: (1) because of the leptokurtic distribution of the scores in both groups, and (2) because the "aggravated" time being served was represented by the largest number of men. Thereby, the removal of the "NBA" midrange score was perceived to have the least effect on the overall distribution. With the last removal, twenty-seven men remained in each group as was reported below in table 4.

 

 

Table 4.--Adjusted Preprogram CRQ Scores

 

X1: Adjusted Preprogram Experimental Group CRQ Scores Categorized

 

"Yes" "No"

black "na" 32, 23 black "na" 24

black "a" 37, 30, 17 black "a" 41, 31, 27, 25, 21, 20, 9

white "na" 34 white "na" 41, 28, 25,

white "a" 38, 35, 21 white "a" 29, 24

Hispanic "na" 25 Hispanic "na" 30

Hispanic "a" 21 Hispanic "a" 26, 14

X3: Adjusted Preprogram Control Group CRQ Scores Categorized

 

"Yes" "No"

black "na" 32 black "na" 24

black "a" 37, 29 black "a" 40, 33, 28, 24, 24, 20, 16

white "na" 29 white "na" 27, 26

white "a" 42, 38, 35, 24 white "a" 40, 28, 24

Hispanic "na" 23 Hispanic "na" 30, 24

Hispanic "a" 11 Hispanic "a" 44, 27

 

 

 

Statistics on the adjusted scores were calculated. They were reported in table 5.

 

 


Table 5.--Adjusted Preprogram CRQ Statistics

 

X1 X3

Range = 9.0 - 41.0 11.0 - 44.0

Mode = 21.0, 25.0 24.0

Median = 26.0 27.0

= 26.962963 28.851852

 

X = 728.0 779.0

X2 = 21,216.0 24,097.0

 

= 7.666577 7.749330

2 = 58.776406 60.052126

g1 = -0.087179 0.058473

g2 = 2.778344 2.73434

 

 

 

The statistics of X1 and X3 indicated a more equal distribution of scores than was indicated by the preadjusted scores during the enlistment phase.[102] Given the sociological data and the distribution of CRQ scores, the two groups were considered matched evenly enough for the purposes of the program.

 

Counselor Response Questionnaire Statistical Analysis

Overview

The Counselor Response Questionnaire (CRQ) was the first pretest and posttest administered to both the experimental and control groups. The CRQ was designed to measure the participants' level of skill in the use of empathic skills. The two groups of twenty-seven men each‑‑determined above‑‑were used in the following statistical analysis. The highest possible score was fifty.

The statistical analysis was divided into three parts: (1) measures of central tendency and variability, (2) measures of frequency, and (3) three t-test calculations. All measures indicated an accomplishment of the third hypothesis in that the men in the experimental group improved in their use of empathic skills.

 

Measures of Central Tendency and Variability

After the end of the program, the experimental and control groups were given the CRQ again as a posttest. The tabulation and statistics on the pretest and posttest scores were reported below in table 6.


Table 6.--Adjusted Pretest and Posttest CRQ Statistics

 

Experimental Group Control Group

X1 X2 X3 X4

1. 21 24 24 27

2. 21 30 29 32

3. 25 25 28 31

4. 20 15 28 37

5. 17 38 24 23

6. 26 44 38 42

7. 34 44 29 24

8. 9 31 27 29

9. 35 40 24 28

10. 29 47 40 23

11. 25 29 35 39

12. 31 38 30 36

13. 30 43 42 41

14. 28 28 23 26

15. 41 47 33 21

16. 24 31 26 22

17. 24 40 20 27

18. 25 25 24 26

19. 21 29 37 41

20. 30 31 40 26

21. 23 37 16 17

22. 41 47 27 24

23. 32 39 11 21

24. 38 47 44 42

25. 37 43 24 24

26. 27 39 32 25

27. 14 41 24 32

 

X1 = experimental group pretest scores X3 = control group pretest scores

X2 = experimental group posttest scores X4 = control group posttest scores

 

X1 X2 X3 X4

Range = 9.0 - 41.0 15.0 - 47.0 11.0 - 44.0 11.0 - 44.0

Mode = 21.0, 25.0 47.0 24.0 26.0

Median = 26.0 38.0 27.0 28.0

= 26.962963 36.0 28.851852 29.111111

X = 728.0 972.0 779.0 786.0

X2 = 21,216.0 36,886.0 24,097.0 24,262.0

= 7.666577 8.375449 7.749330 7.150930

2 = 58.776406 70.148148 60.052126 51.135802

g1 = -0.087179 -0.509484 0.058473 0.053101

g2 = 2.778344 2.479727 2.73434 2.112768

 


In table 6 above, the results indicated a statistically significant improvement in the CRQ scores of the experimental group over the control group. The highest score obtainable was fifty. The modes, medians, and means of X1, X3, and X4 indicated close similarity and contrasted enough with X2 to indicate a significant improvement in overall skill level in the experimental group. The sums of the scores and the sums of the squares of X1, X3, and X4 were similar and also contrasted enough with X2 to indicate significant improvement. The measures of variability represented in the variance and standard deviation of X2 were only a little higher than X1, X3, and X4. When the measures of variability of X2 were compared with the measures of skewness and kurtosis for all four variables, the comparison indicated that the whole distribution of X2 scores was significantly higher than the scores X1, X3, and X4. These indicated that the third hypothesis was accomplished.

 

Measures of Frequency

The difference between the pretest and posttest scores of the experimental and control groups was made more clear through a calculation of the frequency and percentages of the top ten scores between the two groups. The frequency and percentages were reported below in table 7.

 


Table 7.--Frequency Analysis of Top Ten CRQ Scores

 

Pretest Frequency Analysis

Experimental Group Control Group

Score Freq. Percent Score Freq. Percent

25 3 11.11 24 6 22.22

21 3 11.11 40 2 7.41

41 2 7.41 29 2 7.41

30 2 7.41 28 2 7.41

24 2 7.41 27 2 7.41

38 1 3.70 44 1 3.70

37 1 3.70 42 1 3.70

35 1 3.70 38 1 3.70

34 1 3.70 37 1 3.70

32 1 3.70 35 1 3.70

Posttest Frequency Analysis

Experimental Group Control Group

Score Freq. Percent Score Freq. Percent

47 4 14.81 26 3 11.11

31 3 11.11 24 3 11.11

44 2 7.41 42 2 7.41

43 2 7.41 41 2 7.41

40 2 7.41 32 2 7.41

39 2 7.41 27 2 7.41

38 2 7.41 23 2 7.41

29 2 7.41 21 2 7.41

25 2 7.41 39 1 3.70

41 1 3.70 37 1 3.70

 

 

 

From the above frequency analysis, the experimental group did significantly better than did the control group on the CRQ posttests.

 

Three t-Test Calculations

The basic statistics for the three t-test were calculated. Those statistics were reported below in table 8.


Table 8.--Analysis of CRQ Deviations

 

Experimental Group Control Group

X2 - X1 = d1 X4 - X3 = d2

1. 24 21 3 27 24 3

2. 30 21 9 32 29 3

3. 25 25 0 31 28 3

4. 15 20 -5 37 28 9

5. 38 17 21 23 24 -1

6. 44 26 16 42 38 2

7. 44 34 10 24 29 -5

8. 31 9 22 29 27 2

9. 40 35 5 28 24 4

10. 47 29 18 23 40 -17

11. 29 25 4 39 35 4

12. 38 31 7 36 30 6

13. 43 30 13 41 42 -1

14. 28 28 0 26 23 3

15. 47 41 6 21 33 -12

16. 31 24 7 22 26 -4

17. 40 24 16 27 20 7

18. 25 25 0 26 24 2

19. 29 21 8 41 37 4

20. 31 30 1 26 40 -14

21. 37 23 14 17 16 1

22. 47 41 6 24 27 -3

23. 39 32 5 21 11 10

24. 47 38 9 42 44 -2

25. 43 37 6 24 24 0

26. 39 27 12 25 32 -7

27. 41 14 27 32 24 8

 

Experimental Group Control Group

 

= 8.8888889 = 0.185185

d1 = 240.0 d2 = 5.0

d12 = 3,632.0 d22 = 1,161.0

SSd1 = 1,498.6667 SSd2 = 1,159.92

= 53.805211 = 42.965707

= 7.450246 = 6.554823

= 1.433800 = 1.261476

g1 = 0.526499 g1 = -0.982848

g2 = 2.813055 g2 = 3.548039

 


By comparing the means, sums, and sums of squares of d1 and d2 in table 8, a sharp contrast became evident even before the t-test calculations. Though the skewness and kurtosis were more contrasting than before, both distributions were still similarly leptokurtic. By comparing the measures of variance, standard deviation, and standard error with the skewness and kurtosis, once again, the comparison indicated that the whole distribution of scores was higher in the experimental group. The deviations indicated a very large and significant statistical improvement in the experimental group scores.

The calculations in table 8 were used to perform three t-tests on the deviations. The three tests were: (1) a one-tailed t-test on the deviations between pretest and posttest scores of the experimental group (as denoted above, d1 = X2 - X1); (2) a two-tailed t-test on the deviations between pretest and posttest scores of the control group (as denoted above, d2 = X4 - X3); and (3) an independent groups t-test on the deviations between d1 and d2.[103] The null and alternative hypotheses for each projected t-test and the t-test results according to the standard critical values of t were reported below in table 9.


Table 9.--CRQ t-Test Analyses[104]

 

One-tailed or directional t-test on the deviations between pretest and posttest scores of the experimental group seen in d1 in table 8

Ho: d1 0 alpha level .05 with 26df gave a critical value of 1.706

Ha: d1 0 a t = 6.0343956 was found with p < .0005

Ho was rejected and Ha was accepted; therefore the experimental
group improved in posttesting

 

Two-tailed or nondirectional t-test on the deviations between pretest and posttest scores of the control group seen in d2 in table 8

Ho: d2 = 0 alpha level .05 with 26df gave a critical value of 2.056

Ha: d2 0 a t = .1468004 was found with p > .20

Ho was accepted; therefore the control group did not improve

 

Independent groups t-test on the sets of d1 and d2 deviations seen in table 8

Ho: d1 d2 alpha level .05 with 26df gave a critical value of 2.056

Ha: d1 d2 a t = 4.4017786 was found with p < .001

Ho was rejected and Ha was accepted; therefore, the experimental
group significantly improved over the control group

 

 

 

The three t-test results indicated that the control group did not improve during the implementation of the program, but the experimental group made significant improvements. Therefore, based upon the three statistical analyses‑‑(1) measures of central tendency, (2) measures of frequency, and (3) three t-tests‑‑the third project hypothesis was accepted. The men improved in their empathy skills.


Responding Questionnaire Statistical Analysis

Overview

The Responding Questionnaire (RQ) was the second pretest and posttest administered to both the experimental and control groups. The RQ was designed to measure the participants knowledge of some basic helping skills. The two groups of twenty-seven men used in the adjusted preprogram groups above were used in the following analysis. The highest possible score was twenty-seven.

The statistical analysis was divided into three parts. The three parts were: (1) measures of central tendency and variability, (2) measures of frequency, and (3) three
t-test Calculations. All measures indicated an accomplishment of the third hypothesis.

 

Measures of Central Tendency and Variability

After the end of the program, the experimental and control groups were given the RQ again as a posttest. The tabulation scores and basic statistics were reported below in table 10.

 


Table 10.--Pretest and Posttest RQ Statistics

 

Experimental Group Control Group

X1 X2 X3 X4

1. 2 19 12 12

2. 3 21 8 6

3. 6 16 12 3

4. 15 20 14 5

5. 10 18 3 5

6. 18 22 15 10

7. 14 22 0 5

8. 10 21 7 11

9. 8 25 8 5

10. 8 25 6 1

11. 5 27 18 11

12. 17 14 13 17

13. 6 21 8 8

14. 9 19 12 16

15. 15 22 7 6

16. 5 8 11 4

17. 5 22 11 5

18. 8 17 5 1

19. 5 19 9 17

20. 11 21 10 6

21. 2 24 7 7

22. 10 21 9 8

23. 1 22 7 7

24. 21 23 11 16

25. 8 17 5 6

26. 12 19 7 11

27. 5 18 4 1

 

X1 = experimental group pretest scores X3 = control group pretest scores

X2 = experimental group posttest scores X4 = control group posttest scores

 

X1 X2 X3 X4

Range = 1.0 - 21.0 8.0 - 27.0 0.0 - 18.0 1.0 - 17.0

Mode = 5.0 22.0 & 21.0 7.0 5.0

Median = 8.0 21.0 8.0 6.0

= 8.851851 20.111111 8.851851 7.777777

X = 239.0 543.0 239.0 210.0

X2 = 2,817.0 11,295.0 2,519.0 2,220.0

= 5.096866 3.725123 3.865360 4.661372

2 = 25.978052 13.876543 14.941015 21.728395

g1 = 0.582891 -1.058929 0.097081 0.599489

g2 = 2.606441 5.229408 3.023663 2.484236

 


The above indicated a statistically significant improvement in the RQ scores of the experimental group over the control group. The improvement indicated that the helping skills program made a significant difference in the knowledge of helping skills in the experimental group.

 

Measures of Frequency

The difference between the pretest and posttest scores of the experimental and control groups was made more clear through a calculation of the frequency and percentages of the top ten scores between the two groups. The frequency and percentages were reported below in table 11.

 


Table 11.--Frequency Analysis of Top Ten RQ Scores

 

 

Pretest Frequency Analysis

Experimental Group Control Group

Score Freq. Percent Score Freq. Percent

5 5 18.52 7 5 18.52

8 4 14.81 12 3 11.11

10 3 11.11 11 3 11.11

15 2 7.41 8 3 11.1

2 2 7.41 9 2 7.41

21 1 3.70 5 2 7.41

18 1 3.70 18 1 3.70

17 1 3.70 15 1 3.70

14 1 3.70 14 1 3.70

12 1 3.70 13 1 3.70

Posttest Frequency Analysis

Experimental Group Control Group

Score Freq. Percent Score Freq. Percent

22 5 18.52 5 5 18.52

21 5 18.52 11 3 11.11

19 4 14.81 6 3 11.11

25 2 7.41 17 2 7.41

18 2 7.41 16 2 7.41

17 2 7.41 8 2 7.41

27 1 3.70 7 2 7.41

24 1 3.70 12 1 3.70

23 1 3.70 10 1 3.70

20 1 3.70 9 1 3.70

 

 

 

From the above frequency analysis, the experimental group did significantly better than did the control group on the RQ posttests.

 

Three t-Test Calculations

The basic statistics for the three t-tests were calculated. Those statistics were reported below in table 12.


Table 12.--Analysis of RQ Deviations

 

Experimental Group Control Group

X2 - X1 = d1 X4 - X3 = d2

1. 19 2 17 12 12 0

2. 21 3 18 6 8 -2

3. 16 6 10 3 12 -9

4. 20 15 5 5 14 -9

5. 18 10 8 5 3 2

6. 22 18 4 10 15 -5

7. 22 14 8 5 0 5

8. 21 10 11 11 7 4

9. 25 8 17 5 8 -3

10. 25 8 17 1 6 -5

11. 27 5 12 11 18 -7

12. 14 17 -3 17 13 4

13. 21 6 15 8 8 0

14. 19 9 10 16 12 4

15. 22 15 7 6 7 -1

16. 8 5 3 4 11 -7

17. 22 5 17 5 11 -6

18. 17 8 9 1 5 -4

19. 19 5 14 17 9 8

20. 21 11 10 6 10 -4

21. 24 2 22 7 7 0

22. 21 10 11 8 9 -1

23. 22 1 21 7 7 0

24. 23 21 2 16 11 5

25. 17 8 9 6 5 1

26. 19 12 17 11 7 4

27. 18 5 13 1 4 -3

 

Experimental Group Control Group

 

= 11.259259 = -0.0740741

d1 = 304.0 d2 = -29

d12 = 4,372.0 d22 = 585.0

SSd1 = 35.155007 SSd2 = 553.851851

= 35.155007 = 20.513031

= 5.929165 = 4.529131

= 1.141068 = 0.871631

g1 = -0.278209 g1 = 0.017177

g2 = 2.647392 g2 = 2.100533

 


Like with the CRQ, a comparison of the sums of d1 and d2 in table 12 indicated both distributions were similarly leptokurtic. By comparing the measures of variance, standard deviation, and standard error with the skewness and kurtosis, the comparison indicated that the whole distribution of scores was higher in the experimental group. The deviations indicated a very large and significant statistical improvement in the experimental group scores. The three tests were: (1) a one-tailed t-test on the deviations between pretest and posttest scores of the experimental group (as denoted above, d1 = X2 - X1); (2) a two-tailed t-test on the deviations between pretest and posttest scores of the control group (as denoted above, d2 = X4 - X3); and (3) an independent groups t-test on the sets of deviations denoted as d1 and d2. The results were reported below in table 13.

 

 

Table 13.--RQ t-Test Analyses

 

One-tailed or directional t-test on the deviations between pretest and posttest scores of the experimental group seen in d1 in table 12

Ho: d1 0 alpha level .05 with 26df gave a critical value of 1.706

Ha: d1 0 a t = 10.503754 was found with p < .0005

Ho was disproved and Ha was substantiated; therefore the experimental
group improved in posttesting

 

Two-tailed or nondirectional t-test on the deviations between pretest and posttest scores of the control group seen in d2 in table 12

Ho: d2 = 0 alpha level .05 with 26df gave a critical value of 2.056

Ha: d2 0 a t = -1.2322576 was found with p > .20

Ho was substantiated; therefore the control group did not improve

 

Independent groups t-test on the sets of d1 and d2 deviations seen in table 12

Ho: d1 d2 alpha level .05 with 26df gave a critical value of 2.056

Ha: d1 d2 a t = 44.593742 was found with p < .001

Ho was disproved and Ha was substantiated; therefore, the experimental
group significantly improved over the control group

 


The three t-test results indicated that the control group did not improved during the implementation of the program‑‑just as in the CRQ analysis‑‑but that the experimental group made significant improvements. Therefore, based upon the three statistical analyses‑‑(1) measures of central tendency, (2) measures of frequency, and (3) three
t-tests‑‑the third project hypothesis was substantiated. The men improved in their empathy skills.

 

Postprogram Interview Questionnaire Analysis

About the Questionnaire

The Postprogram Interview Questionnaire (PIQ)[105] was the first of two postprogram questionnaires that was used, the second being the Postprogram Helpee Follow-up Questionnaire (PHFQ).[106] Both of these were constructed by the director and approved by the director's committee chairman prior to project implementation. One change was made after approval and after implementation: the various questions on each questionnaire were numbered to facilitate data collection and the construction of the evaluation. In the following analyses under the sections titled "Response Percentages and Interpretation," the numbers of each percentage breakdown and interpretation correspond to the numbers on the questionnaire being analyzed.

The PIQ was administered individually to the 27 men in the experimental group in the chaplain's office within one week of the last session of the program. The men were asked the questions by the director, and the director recorded the responses onto the questionnaire.

To each question, there were a variety of responses. The responses that were similar to each other were categorized. The categorization below reflected exact and equivalent representations of the responses given by the men in the program. For instance, in the category of response "Feeling what they feel," that phrase reflected exactly what the respondents said and that phrase reflected responses that were similar to that phrase like, "helped to feel with another." A few responses were unique like the last one, "getting to know someone closer."[107]

 

PIQ Percentages and Interpretations

In response to #1, "How would you define empathy?" the following were reported, with several responding in more than one category:

# of % of total
Res. Res. Category of Response (Where Res. = Responses)

10 37.03% Feeling what they feel

9 33.33% Putting self in another's place, walking in another's shoes

3 11.10% Both feeling what they feel and walking in another's shoes

2 7.40% Caring about people, their feelings, and problems

2 7.40% Helping, counseling another

2 7.40% Seeing things from another's view

2 7.40% Understanding/learning about another's needs and helping

1 3.70% Could not define empathy

1 3.70% Give constructive feedback

1 3.70% Help without judging

1 3.70% Loving them

1 3.70% Getting to know someone closer

Of the responses, 22 or 81.46% of the men correctly defined the essential nature of empathy that was presented during the sessions. With the exception of the one man who could not define empathy, all of the remaining responses were empathic in nature in that they exhibited positive and open attitudes toward helping.

In response to #2, "Has this program helped you become a better listener?" the following were reported: 27 or 100% of the men believed the program helped them become better listeners. In response to "How?" the following were reported, with several responding in more than one category:

 

# of % of total
Res. Res. Category of Response (Where Res. = Responses)

11 40.73% Used to talk, advise, or quickly respond--now more attentive

5 18.51% Helped be to be a better listener, hear people's problems

4 14.81% Improved body language and eye contact

2 7.40% Helped me open up

2 7.40% Helped me understand people better

2 7.40% Helped me concentrate on listening itself

1 3.70% Enhance my listening and empathic skills

1 3.70% Helped me hear a hurting person better

1 3.70% Relate better and respond with meaning

1 3.70% Understanding the need to allow the other person to talk

1 3.70% Helped me observe others better

1 3.70% No answer

With a few exceptions, such as where the respondents gave no response and where some said the program helped them listen better, the majority reflected that the program helped them in specific ways. Of the responses, 22 or 81.46% of the men in the above top four percentage groups indicated that they had become better listeners and cited a specific skill that was taught in the program.

In response to #3, "What helped you the most?" the following were reported:

 

# of % of total
Res. Res. Category of Response (Where Res. = Responses)

11 40.73% Learning knowledge and skills of listening and empathy

3 11.10% Discrimination exercises

3 11.10% Talking with partners and role play

2 7.40% Hearing people's problems and hurts

2 7.40% Learning experience itself

1 3.70% Body language skills, observation and use

1 3.70% Learning about love and caring

1 3.70% Development of patience

1 3.70% Helped me avoid advice giving

1 3.70% Verbal explanations of director

1 3.70% Knowing that Christ loves me

1 3.70% Learning about communication and being open

 

Several of the categories such as "learning experience itself," "learning about love," "verbal explanations," and "knowing that Christ loves me" did not reflect any specific skill, but these only represented 18.5% of the responses. The remainder of the responses indicated that the majority of the participants found that the best part of the program was the development of a specific helping skill.

In response to #4, "What helped you the least?" the following were reported:

 

# of % of total
Res. Res. Category of Response (Where Res. = Responses)

16 55.54% Nothing, all was helpful

5 18.51% Do not know of anything

1 3.70% Some people were distracting

1 3.70% Was not long enough

1 3.70% Big words

1 3.70% Too fast, could be more paced for amount material

1 3.70% Bad jokes

1 3.70% Kinds of knowledge [could not understand question]

Of the responses, 16 or 55.54% of the men indicated that everything had value, and 5 or 18.51% of the men could not name any specific thing that was not helpful. With regard to two responses, "Big words" and "Too fast," these may have been a concern for some of the others, which would indicate that the program could be improved through simplification.

In response to #5, "During the weeks of this program, have you noticed any improvements in your ability to relate to others?" 27 or 100% of the men indicated that they had noticed improvements in their abilities. When asked to describe one instance, they reported the following:

 

# of % of total
Res. Res. Category of Response (Where Res. = Responses)

5 18.51% In my general attitude, the whole way I relate

4 14.81% In my use of empathy and being a better listener

3 11.10% More attentive, give more effort at listening

2 7.40% In observations of others

2 7.40% When talking to others, am more patient and go slower

2 7.40% Helped me stop advice giving

2 7.40% I evaluate more, can hear both sides

2 7.40% Could not think of a response

1 3.70% I understand people more

1 3.70% Helping people with their problems

1 3.70% In helping the grieving

1 3.70% Got more friends

1 3.70% In how I encourage others

1 3.70% In how I read the Bible and stories

Only two men gave a specific instance with, "helped me stop advice giving." All the others spoke in generalities. Even though most of the men could not be specific, all of the men felt that the program helped them improve their relationships during the course of the program.

Question #6 was about the three phases of a relationship: namely, the foundation, the interpersonal bridge, and the connection. None or 0% of the men gave the desired responses. Only two men indicated that the foundation for starting relationships was listening, which was close to the desired response of "attending skills."

The three phases referred to the three major divisions of the entire program. Since they were not reiterated or emphasized, the expectation that anyone would remember them was seen in retrospect to be unrealistic. These were more theoretical and of themselves not very important to actual skill development.

In #7 the men were asked to rate themselves on a scale of 1 to 5 with regard to improvement (1 = none, 3 = moderate, 5 = great). The men were asked to complete the following statement: "In light of my participation in the helping skills program." The following were reported by the participants on how they rated themselves.

 

Level
of # of % of total
Rating Res. Res. Category of Response (Where Res. = Responses)

 

5 18 66.65% I feel the program has improved my listening skills

4 7 25.92%

3 2 7.40%

 

5 21 77.76% I feel that my relationships will improve

4 5 18.51%

3 1 3.70%

 

5 18 66.65% I feel that I can understand people better

4 6 22.21%

3 3 11.10%

 

5 20 74.06% I feel more confident in being able to help people

4 5 18.51%

3 2 7.40%

 

5 16 59.24% I understand the importance of reflecting

4 10 37.03%

3 1 3.70%

From the above figures, every man indicated that the program helped increase his relationship and helping skills, with a large majority indicating that the program helped to a "great" degree. The small minority of low ratings still indicated some growth.

In response to #8, "What did you learn about listening that you did not know before?" the following were reported, with several responding in more than one category:

 

# of % of total
Res. Res. Category of Response (Where Res. = Responses)

6 22.21% To listen with the heart not just ears, paying more attention

5 18.51% All the skills of listening and caring, how to listen

3 11.10% Sharing other people's feelings and where they hurt

3 11.10% Not to solve the person's problem, hear before you advise

2 7.40% Need to help a hurting person understand problem

2 7.40% Eye contact and relaxing, body language

1 3.70% A person can be hurt if you are not listening

1 3.70% The difference between AE-I and AE-II

1 3.70% Focus on a person's movement

1 3.70% Being able to reflect

1 3.70% That some persons can be helped if they just talk

1 3.70% Shut up and listen

With the exceptions of "Need to help a hurting person understand problem" and "Focus on a person's movement," all of the other responses including those in the majority reflected skills taught in the program. The large majority of responses indicated that the men learned some skills that they had not known before the program was administered.

In response to #9, "In the light the program, what area of your life would you like to improve the most?" the following were reported, with several responding in more than one category:

 

# of % of total
Res. Res. Category of Response (Where Res. = Responses)

8 29.62% Be more empathic, better listener, more attentive

8 29.62% Be able to be a better helper, more loving, caring

2 7.40% More understanding

2 7.40% Be a better communicator

2 7.40% More self-disclosure, openness

2 7.40% Closer to Jesus, walk with the Lord

1 3.70% Be able to present self in a better way

1 3.70% Get closer to my family

1 3.70% Be stronger

1 3.70% Less hard on myself

1 3.70% Get dirty words out of my mouth

1 3.70% More patience

1 3.70% Me

From the first four categories above, 20 or 74.04% of the men indicated a desire to grow with regard to their abilities to relate. Yet with the possible exceptions of "Being more empathic," "More understanding," and "more self-disclosure," most of the responses did not indicate any specific area of growth. Even the three just mentioned could be construed as general, and several of the responses like "Closer to Jesus" and "Me" were more clichs than not.

The lack of specificity could also be due to the way in which the question was framed. Taking into consideration that most of the men not only want to learn but that they desire to please, the question may have yielded more specific responses if it had been directed to program skills rather than to "life" in general.

In response to #10, "What was the best part of the entire program?" the following were reported:

 

# of % of total
Res. Res. Category of Response (Where Res. = Responses)

6 22.21% Sharing and growing, fellowship

5 18.51% Every meeting was good, all, no distinction

4 14.81% Self-evaluation, learning about self

3 11.10% Empathy, use and learning of empathy and skills

2 7.40% Attending skills

1 3.70% Each week was a challenge

1 3.70% Lectures, verbal explanations

1 3.70% Different ways of communicating

1 3.70% Day on reflecting feelings

1 3.70% Day on self-disclosure

1 3.70% Helping others

1 3.70% Graduation

All of the responses, possibly even the one that was rather facetious ("graduation"), indicated that the men thought the growth they experienced was the best part of the program. From the first, fourth, eighth, ninth, tenth, and eleventh categories, 15 or 55.51% of the men found that the best part of the program was in the ways they related to each other. Most of the others found the best part in the development of their understanding or themselves.

In response to #11, "What was the worst part of the entire program?" the following were reported:

 

# of % of total
Res. Res. Category of Response (Where Res. = Responses)

12 44.43% Nothing, no worst part

3 11.10% Self-evaluations, what I learned about myself

2 7.40% Three hours each session, too long

2 7.40% Some worldly or bad words

1 3.70% Some of the men who hindered the program or did not share

1 3.70% People who dropped out

1 3.70% Some of the examples

1 3.70% Get up on Saturday

1 3.70% Too rushed

1 3.70% Bad jokes

1 3.70% Writing

A large number of the men, 12 or 44.43%, did not identify a "worst" area. The 3 men, 11.10%, who indicated the self-knowledge they learned as the worst part also had indicated this as the best part of the program. Most of the other responses indicated some personal discomforts that did not appear to be very significant.

In response to #12, "If you could add one thing, what would that be?" the following were reported:

 

# of % of total
Res. Res. Category of Response (Where Res. = Responses)

12 40.73% More time for sessions, longer

5 18.51% Nothing

3 11.10% Another seven weeks, more weeks, more sessions

2 7.40% More Scripture, Christian literature

1 3.70% More about love

1 3.70% More prayer

1 3.70% More observations of skills in use

1 3.70% Instruction on dealing with grief from death

1 3.70% Thank you

There was a general satisfaction with the entire program as presented. Of the responses, 15 or 55.54% of the men wanted either more time or more sessions. Similarly but from a general standpoint, 20 or 74.06% of the men wanted more of what was given in the program. The desire for more seemed to indicate an overall satisfaction and an increased curiosity about the subject of the program in general.

In response to #13, "If you could take one thing away, what would that be?" the following were reported:

 

# of % of total
Res. Res. Category of Response (Where Res. = Responses)

20 74.06% Nothing

1 3.70% Large group and limit glass to 4 persons

1 3.70% Do not know of anything

1 3.70% Needless talking

1 3.70% King Pygmalion

1 3.70% Disturbances

1 3.70% Time limits

1 3.70% Bad words

There was a general satisfaction with the entire program as presented. Of the responses, 20 or 74.06% of the men indicated that they would not take anything away from the program. One man was not so certain, but he just did not know of anything he would take away from the program. Most of the other responses indicated some personal discomforts or limitations.

In response to #14, "Why is empathy and listening important?" the following were reported, with several responding in more than one category:

 

# of % of total
Res. Res. Category of Response (Where Res. = Responses)

12 44.43% Help people deal with problems, struggles, life

7 25.92% Understand and caring of people and their feelings

2 7.40% To feel what they feel, to show seriousness feelings

2 7.40% Better communicate with people

2 7.40% Helps helpee understand self

1 3.70% In order to have a deep relationship

1 3.70% Foundation of helping

1 3.70% Give a person relief

With the exception of "Helps helpee understand self," 25 or 92.57% of the men indicated in one way or another that empathy was to be directed toward another person for that person's benefit. This was a significant increase in understanding, especially since almost all of them could not define empathy on the knowledge assessment pretest.

In response to #15, "What happens when a helper gives understanding to a hurting person with problems?" the following were reported, with several responding in more than one category:

 

# of % of total
Res. Res. Category of Response (Where Res. = Responses)

11 40.73% Relief in the hurting person, feel free, less pain

6 22.21% Helps, makes person getting empathy feel better

5 18.51% Liberation, help overcome, freed

4 14.81% Feel trust, aid openness

4 14.81% Feel loved and cared for

4 14.81% Growth in other person

3 11.10% Feel comforted, hits the spot

2 7.40% Feel understood, help understand

1 3.70% Helps hurting person see problem more clearly

1 3.70% Gives room for self-evaluation in hurting person

1 3.70% Rise up and be a leader

1 3.70% Cope with problems

1 3.70% Get a response

1 3.70% Feel connected

1 3.70% Feel security

All of the men seemed to understand something about the affects of empathy on persons. Many of the men gave responses that fell into several categories, and there was much variety. The unique and feeling nature of the responses indicated that most of the men had thought through the effects of empathy and that they were not just parroting lessons they had learned.

In response to #16, "What other comments do you have about the program?" the following were reported, with a few men responding in more than one category:

 

# of % of total
Res. Res. Category of Response (Where Res. = Responses)

8 29.62% Good, like to see it continue, could go on forever

5 18.51% Enjoyed the program

4 14.81% Suggest others should go through the program

4 14.81% No comment

2 7.40% Helped me grow

1 3.70% Helped me understand myself

1 3.70% Need more time, so much material

1 3.70% Should do program more often

1 3.70% Really helped me understand how to be a listener

The general consensus was that the men enjoyed the program and wished it could have continued. Nothing very substantial was offered relative to improving the program that was presented.

In #17 the director was to rate his impressions of the men. When the director interviewed the men, he rated them on a scale of 1 to 5 with regard how he perceived their improvement (1 = none, 3 = moderate, 5 = great). The director graded each man on the basis of the listed categories, preceding each category by the phrase: "I feel that the participant." The following were reported by the director indicating how the director rated the men.

 

Level
of # of % of total
Rating Res. Res. Category of Response (Where Res. = Responses)

 

5 12 44.43% Gained some understanding about empathy

4 9 33.33%

3 4 14.81%

2 2 7.40%

 

5 10 37.03% Understands the importance of empathy/listening

4 11 40.73%

3 4 14.81%

2 2 7.40%

 

5 7 25.92% Understands the importance of communicating

4 8 29.62% understanding

3 8 29.62%

2 4 14.81%

 

5 21 77.76% Was sincere about his efforts at learning how to help

4 5 18.51%

3 1 3.70%

 

5 19 70.35% Feels he can better help others by listening

4 6 22.21%

3 3 11.10%

Each level given was based on one of two criteria: either the man entered the seminar with a low empathic skills and grew, or the man entered with some empathic skills and learned to better use the skills. Some of the men were not as conscientious as others, and some were more interpersonally mature than others. A few were easily distracted and had trouble remaining focused.

All of the men made some progress in their understanding, and most of them increased their own skill level by some degree. From the first, fourth, and fifth sets of responses, the high levels assigned and their relative percentages indicated that the knowledge and skill level of the large majority of the men increased significantly.

The director perceived that a few of the men, 6 or 22.21%, did not increase very much at all in their understanding of the importance of empathy. Most of these men were easily distracted, had trouble taking the assignments seriously, and were more dominant than the others. Their personalities were more anti-empathic in general, and their participation in the program appeared to be more along the lines of recreation rather than a sincere desire to learn.

In response to #18, "What is the general impression of the effect of the program on the participant?" the following were recorded, with the director making several responses about most of the men:

 

# of % of total
Res. Res. Category of Response (Where Res. = Responses)

8 29.62% Tried hard and made progress according to his level

6 22.21% Tried very hard to grow, recognizing some former bad habits

5 18.51% Intelligent, tried hard, and built latent empathic skills

4 14.81% Slow and very analytical, struggled with feeling component

3 11.10% Moderately empathic, present more for something to do

3 11.10% Strong willed, dominant, but tried hard

3 11.10% Easily distracted, but sincere

2 7.40% Already empathic and built on current skills

2 7.40% Had a little trouble reading, leaned on others for help

2 7.40% Slow and analytical, struggled with spontaneity

1 3.70% Had trouble with concepts and cognitive elements

1 3.70% Admittedly distracted because of family problems

1 3.70% Easily distracted and not that sincere, sometimes distracting

1 3.70% Degree of interest in program questionable, restless

Of the observations that the director recorded and within the top three categories, 19 or 70.35% of the men tried hard and made progress. Others tried hard to overcome their resistances to a new method of relating. Several participated for motives other than personal growth, and the motives of some were difficult to discern.

The results of the Postprogram Interview Questionnaire indicated that the experimental group participants made significant gains in their use and knowledge of empathy skills. The percentages were high in every category. Therefore, based upon the experimental groups' responses, the third project hypothesis was substantiated. The men improved in their empathy skills.

 

Postprogram Helpee Follow-up Questionnaire Analysis

About the Questionnaire

The Postprogram Helpee Follow-up Questionnaire (PHFQ)[108] was the second of two postprogram questionnaires that were used, the first being the Postprogram Interview Questionnaire. Both of these were constructed by the director and approved by the director's committee chairman prior to project implementation. The PHFQ was designed to gather some data from some of the beneficiaries of the helping skills of the participants in the experimental group: hence, "helpee" refers to such a beneficiary. One change was made after approval and after implementation: the various questions on each questionnaire were numbered to facilitate data collection and the construction of the evaluation. In the following analyses under the sections titled "Response Percentages and Interpretation," the numbers of each percentage breakdown and interpretation correspond to the numbers on the questionnaire being analyzed.[109]

The PHFQ was administered on the Sunday following the last program session: 22 September 1996. During both Sunday services, the men who had gone through the program were asked to come forward and stand before the congregation. Of the twenty-seven participants, only fifteen men came to the two services. With men standing, the director passed out the questionnaire, gave some instructions, and read the list of twenty-seven participants.

The men in both services filled out the questionnaires and turned them in to the director. A total thirty-six members from both services responded and turned in questionnaires that they had answered. They were told that placing their names on the questionnaires was optional, and only five men placed their names on the questionnaires they had filled out.

 

PHFQ Percentages and Interpretations

In response to #1, "How many of the helpers do you see and talk to at least once a week?" the following were reported:

 

# of % of total
Res. Res. Category of Response (Where Res. = Responses)

12 33.33% 1 helper talked to at least once a week

11 30.55% 2 helpers talked to at least once a week

2 5.55% 3 helpers talked to at least once a week

6 16.66% 4 helpers talked to at least once a week

3 8.33% 5 helpers talked to at least once a week

2 5.55% 8 helpers talked to at least once a week

The general consensus was that the program had a positive benefit upon the participants. In addition to the above, in response to "Of those, generally, do you feel that they relate to you better?" all 36 or 100% of the men indicated a "yes" response. In the top two categories, 23 or 63.88% of the respondents indicated frequent interaction with the program participants. Several others had frequent interactions with several of the helpers.

In response to #2 on the questionnaire, the respondents were asked to choose one of the helpers who had gone through the program. Then they were asked to respond to the following questions: "How long have you known this helper?" The following were reported:

 

# of % of total
Res. Res. Category of Response (Where Res. = Responses)

1 2.77% A while

1 2.77% Less than a month

7 19.43% 1-3 months

4 11.10% 4-9 months

6 16.66% 1-1.5 years

10 27.77% 2-2.5 years

3 8.33% 3-3.5 years

1 2.77% 4-4.5 years

3 8.33% 5-5.5 years

1 2.77% 6 years

Of those helpees who responded, 24 or 66.63% of them had known the helper for over a year. Given the intensity and close quarters of the living environment, most of the helpees were deemed to have had enough interpersonal relations with the helpers to perceive a difference.

In response to #3 on the questionnaire, the respondents were asked to choose one of the helpers who had gone through the program. Then the respondents were asked to answer the following question: "How often do you talk to this helper?" The following were reported:

 

# of % of total
Res. Res. Category of Response (Where Res. = Responses)

1 2.77% All the time

19 52.76% 1 time a day or more

1 2.77% Almost everyday

1 2.77% Every other day

1 2.77% Every time I see him

8 22.21% 2-4 or more times a week

2 5.55% 1 time a week

1 2.77% 3 times a month

1 2.77% Every once in a while

1 2.77% Left space blank

From the first six categories listed above, 31 or 86.08% of the men had frequent interactions with the helpers. Because of the nature and close quarters of the men, those having daily interactions would most likely be housed in the same area. Being housed in the same area would result in many more interactions than would normally be experienced in the freeworld, yielding a large number of possible observations of conduct.

When the amount of time the men have known each other from #2 above is considered with the frequency in #3 above, a huge number of opportunities for frequent interactions were seen to be possible. Given that the respondents may not have much expertise in accurately evaluating the empathy and listening skills of the helpers, nevertheless, by virtue of frequent interactions alone the respondents could observe change with a positive degree of credibility.

Given some variables that are impossible to calculate with accuracy, the consensus of the respondents was that the participants improved in their general relationship skills. Given the frequency of interactions over long periods of time, the conclusion was that the respondents were credible in their observations.

In responding to #4, the men in the two Sunday services were to read the questionnaire and rate the participants on a scale of 1 to 4 with regard to how the respondent perceived that participant's improvement (1 = no improvement; 2 = improved, but barely noticeable; 3 = noticeably improved; 4 = greatly improved). On the questionnaire, each of the statements were to be prefaced with this introductory phrase: "Do you feel." Having chosen a single participant with which the respondent had the most frequent interactions, the following were reported by the respondents indicating how the respondents rated that participant:

 

Level
of # of % of total
Rating Res. Res. Category of Response (Where Res. = Responses)

 

4 20 55.54% That the helper has improved his ability to help

3 12 33.32%

2 4 11.10%

 

4 20 55.54% That the helper listens better

3 13 36.10%

2 3 8.33%

 

4 18 49.98% That the helper understands you better

3 15 41.65%

2 2 5.55%

1 1 2.77%

 

4 15 41.65% That the helper has more insight about you

3 14 38.87%

2 5 13.88%

1 2 5.55%

 

4 24 66.64%% More at ease around the helper

3 7 19.43%

2 4 11.10%

1 1 2.77%

 

4 26 72.20% More free to share with the helper

3 6 16.66%

2 2 5.55%

1 2 5.55%

 

A large majority of the respondents rated most of the participants with a level 4, which meant that the program "greatly improved" the participants' listening, helping skills, and general ease of presence. Even though two respondents felt that the participant they were evaluating made no improvement, the vast majority indicated improvement. Though improved, a few mitigating variables existed that could have skewed the ratings in a positive direction.

Several reasons under girded the proposition that most of the respondents were inclined to be positive. One, of a combined total of 167 persons in both Sunday services, only 36 responded and answered the questionnaire, which meant that some of the men who might have been inclined to rate the participants more negatively may have abstained. Two, the respondents, as all prisoners, were influenced by the inmate code and the nature of the prison environment which tends to make every prisoner an ally with every other prisoner against the institution. That would include the inclination to report positively and to avoid negative reports on fellow prisoners. Three, since the respondents did not know how to accurately describe listening and empathy behavior in the first place, the respondents' judgments had to be based on subjective influences like how they felt about their conversations with the participants prior to and after the implementation of the program.

Despite influences that tended to incline the ratings in a positive direction, reasons existed to indicate some validity, even though skewed in a positive direction. One, enough variety in the responses existed to indicate that a large percentage of the respondents were making decisions upon their observations and not simply to please the director or praise the participants. Two, from the length of time and frequency of observations indicated from questions #2 and #3 above, the respondents' subjective feelings about changes in the participants' behavior needed to be considered as valuable insights into the effects of the program.

In response to #5, "Were you aware that the helping skills program was going on?" the following responses were reported:

 

# of % of total
Res. Res. Category of Response (Where Res. = Responses)

16 44.43% Yes

11 30.54% No

9 24.99% Did not answer

The responses indicated little. Though the program got good publicity from the participants, knowing whether or not the program was taking place did not seem to have a bearing upon how the respondents rated the participants.

In response to #6, "Do you have any comments about the general effect of the helping skills program (on participants/unit/etc.)?" the following responses were reported:

 

# of % of total
Res. Res. Category of Response (Where Res. = Responses)

17 47.20% None, no comment

13 36.10% Good, helpful, keep it up, have more like it, nice thing

1 2.77% I believe they are skills that are an asset for a life time

1 2.77% He is a person someone can talk to

1 2.77% Anything that betters him in this place is worthwhile

1 2.77% The program changes a person's attitude toward life

1 2.77% (Name of participant) has come a long way, program blessed

1 2.77% (Name of participant) has worked hard, helped him a bunch

With the few exceptions like "changes a person's attitude" and "skills that are an asset for life," the respondents did not indicate anything substantial. Most of the respondents did not have much to say or said nothing. Most of the comments were vague generalities.

Combined with the other responses to questions #1 through #5, the consensus was that the program was needed and provided the participants with a significant growth experience. According to most of the respondents, the program improved the helping skills of the participants. The results of the Postprogram Helpee Follow-up Questionnaire indicated that the experimental groups participants made significant gains in their use and knowledge of empathy skills.

Two reasons were found to accept the third hypothesis. The first reason was that the two professional evaluations indicated that the program lesson plans were suitable for such growth and that the men in the experimental group learned. The second reason was that the four statistical measures indicated an improvement in every category. Therefore, the third hypothesis was accepted in that the men in the experimental group improved in their use of several helping skills and the control group did not.


 

CHAPTER 4

 

Summary, Conclusions, Recommendations

 

Summary

On the Theoretical Rationales

The importance of the project was substantiated by three theoretical rationales: a theological rationale, a historical rationale, and a practical rationale. These three together affirmed the value of implementing an empathic helping skills program in the Gib Lewis State Prison in Woodville, Texas.

The theological rationale was based upon three foundations, each containing from two to five areas of support. The first foundation was supported through a discussion of four general themes about the nature of Christian love. The second was supported through a discussion of the five responsibilities of the church. The third was seen in two examples of New Testament prisoner ministry. Those foundations were outlined in greater detail in chapter 1 under the subsection, "Conclusions on the Theological Rationale."[110]

The historical rationale was based upon three developments, and each was chronicled from two to three related standpoints. The first development was with regard to the origin of general programming in American prison reform. The second was with regard to recent secular reform and programming in Texas prisons. The third was with regard to the struggle and the future of prison chaplaincy. Those developments were outlined in greater detail in chapter 1 under the subsection, "Conclusions on the Historical Rationale."[111]

The practical rationale was based upon three considerations, each substantiated by three to four reasons or observations. The first consideration was about four of the inhibitions to the expression of empathy within the hostile environment of a prison. The second was about three social concerns relating to the nature of the institutional environment. The third was about four aspects of the unique role of the chaplaincy department in presenting such a program. Those considerations were outlined in greater detail in chapter 1 under the subsection, "Conclusions on the Practical Rationale."[112]

 

On the Description of the Project

The description of the project was broken into three areas corresponding to the three hypotheses postulated at the beginning of the program: (1) that a suitable program would be developed within the time frames, (2) that a selected group of inmates would remain with the helping skills program, and (3) that the program would increase the selected inmates' ability to use several helping skills. Those three areas covered the description of the project from its theoretical formation to its final pretesting phase.

The development of the program was discussed through chronicling the three phases of the program development: the formation of the project focus, the development of the lesson plans, and the development of the instructional aids. By July of 1996 all of the lesson plans and instructional aids were complete, and those items substantiated the first hypothesis that a program could be developed. The phases were discussed in greater detail in chapter 2 under the subsection, "Development of the Program."[113]

The enlistment of a selected group of inmates was discussed through the chronicling of the four phases of the enlistment process: advertisement, enrollment, pretesting, and matching the experimental and control groups. The four phases were complete by 10 August 1996. The phases were discussed in greater detail in chapter 2 under the subsection, "Enlistment of Inmates."[114]

The implementation of the program was chronicled in depth throughout the program as the director made pastoral observations and reflections after each of the seven sessions. The director led each seminar according to the lesson plans contained in appendix 2. The first three sessions involved facilitation in the use of basic attending skills. The fourth session involved facilitation in the use of self-disclosure. The last three sessions involved facilitation in the use of empathy skills. The reflections on each lesson included comments on the director and the participants; they were placed in appendix 8. The lessons were summarized in greater detail in chapter 2 under the subsection, "Summarization of Daily Lessons."[115]

The last elements in the implementation of the program involved administering the Postprogram Interview Questionnaire to the experimental group, administering the Postprogram Helpee Follow-up Questionnaire to persons who felt they had some interactions with the experimental, and administering the Counselor Response Questionnaire (CRQ) and Responding Questionnaire (RQ) as posttests to both groups. The CRQ and RQ posttesting of the control group was the last element in the program implementation, and the posttesting took place on 28 September 1996.

 

On the Evaluation of the Project

The evaluation of the project was broken into three areas corresponding to the three hypotheses postulated at the beginning of the program: (1) evaluating the program development, (2) evaluating the program enlistment, and (3) evaluating the program implementation. All the measures of each part of the evaluation phase indicated that the program was meaningful to the participants and that the program increased the empathic helping skills of the participants in the experimental group by a significant measure.

Four methods were used in evaluating the development of the program. One, Alan Jackson, one of the director's doctoral committee members, approved a draft of the lesson plans and handouts that were finalized and make up the substance of appendixes 2 and 3. Two, Vance Drum, senior chaplain at Eastham and an expert in criminal justice ministry, reviewed the lesson plans and handouts before implementation and deemed them suitable to the project objectives. Three, the completed lesson plans and handouts themselves became a evidence of the development of the program.

The fourth method was the selection and use of five preapproved evaluation instruments: (1) the Preprogram Background Questionnaire in appendix 4, (2) the Counselor Response Questionnaire in appendix 5, (3) the Responding Questionnaire in appendix 6, (4) the Postprogram Interview Questionnaire in appendix 9, and (5) the Postprogram Helpee Follow-up Questionnaire in appendix 10. The four methods were explained in chapter 3 under the subsection, "Evaluating the Program Development."[116]

Three measures were used in evaluating the program enlistment: (1) the effect of the advertisements and announcements, (2) the experimental and control group rosters and worksheets, and (3) the completion of posttesting for the control group. At the end of the program twenty-seven men in the experimental group attended all of the sessions and completed the posttesting (a few making up a couple of sessions), and twenty-eight men in the control group completed posttesting. This indicated that the second hypothesis was substantiated in that an experimental group and a control group of men stayed with the entire program. The use of those measures was explained in greater detail in chapter 3 under the subsection, "Evaluating the Program Enlistment."[117]

Six methods were used in evaluating the implementation of the program: two professional evaluations, and four statistical evaluations. The two professional evaluations involved (1) Alex Taylor who sat in on session seven and (2) the director's notes of pastoral observation and reflections. Those evaluations were explained in greater detail in chapter 3 under the subsection, "Evaluating the Program Implementation."[118]

In order to match the two groups more closely, a few scores of men who did not finish the program were deleted from the records of the preprogram tabulation. At the close of posttesting and final culling of absentees, the director's adjustments in the record indicated that two matched groups of twenty-seven men each were left. The statistics calculated on the adjusted scores of the experimental and control groups indicated that the two groups were very well matched. The adjustment and matching were described in greater detail in chapter 3 under, adjusting the pretest and posttest CRQ scores."[119]

Four statistical evaluations were done on the results of four testing instruments: the Counselor Response Questionnaire (CRQ), the Responding Questionnaire (RQ), the Postprogram Interview Questionnaire (PIQ), and the Postprogram Helpee Follow-up Questionnaire (PHFQ). All of the processing done on the results of the questionnaires indicated a very significant improvement in knowledge and skills in the experimental group participants and no significant improvement in the control group.

The CRQ and RQ were used as pretests and posttests for both the experimental and the control groups. Three types of statistical measures were done on the results: (1) several measures of central tendency and variability, (2) measures of frequency, and (3) three kinds of t-test calculations. All the measures indicated that the experimental group had significantly increased in knowledge and skill, and the control group had not significantly increased. The statistical analysis on the CRQ results was discussed in greater detail in chapter 3 under the subsection, "Counselor Response Questionnaire Statistical Analysis,"[120] and the statistical analysis on the RQ results was discussed in chapter 3 under the subsection under the subsection, "Responding Questionnaire Statistical Analysis."[121]

The PIQ was given to the men in the experimental group after the program in sessions of one-on-one counseling. A great preponderance of responses indicated that the program increased the skills according to the program objectives. The PIQ results and analysis were discussed in greater detail in chapter 3 under the subsection, "Postprogram Questionnaire Analysis."[122]

The PHFQ was given to members of the prisoner Christian congregation after the close of the program. The members of the Christian congregation were asked if they had any regular communication with any of the helpers in the program. Thirty-six members of the congregation responded, filled out the PHFQ, and returned a suitable questionnaire. A great majority of the congregational respondents perceived a large improvement in the experimental group participants. The PHFQ results and analysis were discussed in greater detail in chapter 3 under the subsection, "Postprogram Helpee Follow-up Questionnaire Analysis."[123]

 

Conclusions

The initial problem was the development and implementation of an empathic helping skills program. The results on the development that a suitable program was developed within the prescribed time constraints. The results on the implementation of the program indicated that the twenty-seven men in the experimental group increased in their knowledge and ability to use empathy, and the men in the matched control group did not increase in the knowledge and ability to use empathy during the same period of time. The increase was measured by several evaluations and instruments against a control group who did not go through the program and who did not significantly increase in their knowledge or skill level throughout the time the experimental group was going through the program. The data collected in this report indicated that an empathic helping skills program was developed and implemented, and that it increased the empathic helping skills of the experimental group.

Recommendations

The largest concern by a few in the experimental group was with the amount of information. A few elements in the program could be shortened or made less strenuous. For instance, the number of "feeling" words could be decreased. Some of the more theoretical elements such as 5.4a-b could be shortened and made simpler. Humor could have lightened the sessions and made them more lively, especially at the beginning.

The Interpersonal Check List (ICL) was time-consuming. As reflected in the pastoral observations, the time spent working through the check list and doing the calculations did not seem to be as worthwhile. The men enjoyed it and said they gained a lot. Nevertheless, the director perceived that the time spent on the ICL would have been better used if the time had been spent on the attending and empathy skills.

A profitable but expensive addition to the program would have been the video taping of some pairs exhibiting their empathy skills. Likewise, the participants would have profited from videos clips of professional helpers using empathy. Another use of videos might have been the borrowing of a three to five minute segment of a popular movie that illustrated an actor or actress using or failing to use empathy.

The devotions seemed to bring the program into focus. Love was presented as the primary motive for all of helping, and this seemed to be crucial to the integration of biblical values with secular helping skills. In the experimental group there were a few Christians with fundamental tendencies, and their special needs seemed to demand a Christian or biblical foundation to anything that was not quoted out of the Bible. The devotions could have been made livelier with pictorial illustrations of some kind.

The program might be as substantial with a smaller number of handouts. Using the overheads was productive, but the director began to wonder at the expense of handing out every overhead. There were no complaints and many compliments, but director had the feeling that many of the men might have been loaded too much with the number of pages in their possession. Trimming down the number of handouts might make future reference easier and facilitate the long term development of empathic skills.


 

APPENDIX 1

 

professional Evaluations

 

Three professional evaluations were accomplished on two phases of the program implementation. First, Allen Jackson (D.Min. committee member) gave permission for the director to send him a draft of the lesson plans, handouts, and overheads for review. That was accomplished on 8 July 1996, and a copy of the letter sent to Jackson was called item 1, First Lesson Plan Evaluation. Jackson responded by phone the following week indicating the lessons' suitability. Second, an evaluation of the program lesson plans, handouts, and overheads was done by Vance Drum, senior chaplain at the Eastham State Prison in Lovelady, Texas. Drum's evaluation was called item 2, Second Lesson Plan Evaluation. Third, an evaluation of session 7 was done by Alex Taylor, Chaplaincy Regional Coordinator for the program director's region, based in Huntsville, Texas. Taylor's evaluation was called item 3, Session Evaluation (pages 1 to 4).

 


[Item 1:
First Lesson Plan Evaluation]

 

 


 

 

[Item 2:
Second Lesson Plan Evaluation]

 


 

 

[Item 3: Session Evaluation]
Page 1 of 4


[Item 3: Session Evaluation
--continued] Page 2 of 4

 

 

 


[Item 3: Session Evaluation--continued] Page 3 of 4

 

 

 


[Item 3: Session Evaluation--continued] Page 4 of 4

 

 

 



[97]Q.v., appendix 5.

[98]Q.v., appendix 6.

[99]Q.v., appendix 11, items #1 and #2.

[100]Adapted from table 1 (q.v., p. 57): Y = Yes for visit at least once a month, N = No for no visit at least once a month, B = Black, W = White, H = Hispanic, A = Aggravated time being served, and NA = Non-aggravated time being served. Numbers in parentheses indicate the score that was dropped.

[101]Ibid.

[102]Q.v., table 3, p. 60.

[103]These three tests were chosen after a consultation with Larry Spradley, Professor of Business Statistics at Lamar University in Beaumont, Texas.

[104]All of the critical values for t were determined from the statistical table in Jaccard and Becker, Statistics for the Behavioral Sciences, 2d ed., (Pacific Grove: Brooks/Cole, 1990), 486-87.

[105]Q.v., appendix 9.

[106]Q.v., appendix 10.

[107]The categorizations of similar responses was also used below in the evaluations of the Postprogram Helpee Follow-up Questionnaire Analysis.

[108]Q.v., appendix 10.

[109]The categorizations of similar responses was explained above in the evaluations of the Postprogram Interview Questionnaire Analysis on pp. 91-2.

[110]Q.v., p. 40.

[111]Q.v., pp. 40-2.

[112]Q.v., pp. 42-3.

[113]Q.v., pp. 51-4: the lessons were placed in appendix 2 and the overheads in appendix 3.

[114]Q.v., pp. 55-62.

[115]Q.v., pp. 62-6: the lessons were placed in appendix 2.

[116]Q.v., pp. 68-70.

[117]Q.v., pp. 70-2.

[118]Q.v., pp. 73-74.

[119]Q.v., pp. 74-7.

[120]Q.v., pp. 77-83.

[121]Q.v., pp. 84-90.

[122]Q.v., pp. 91-107.

[123]Q.v., pp. 107-14.