Master's Theses



Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


This research was conducted to determine if a discrepancy between self and ideal-self concepts could be effectively reduced by a verbal conditioning technique. Subjects were selected on the basis of manifesting a self-ideal discrepancy of one standard deviation or more as measured by the Leary Interpersonal Check List. The subjects were then divided into two groups, equated on the basis of sex, age, and amount of discrepancy. One group was reinforced for statements about the ideal-self in three different discussion sessions; the other was subjected to experimental conditions but received no reinforcement. A second check list was then administered and scored to determine what changes occurred. All data were analyzed by a chi square design. Results indicated that the experimental group showed more decrease in discrepancy than the control group, and that a decrease was the most prevalent result within the experimental group. It was also noted that within the experimental group the movement was form post-conditioning ideal to pre-conditioning self. The results are a demonstration of what self-theorists assert is necessary for successful psychotherapy.


William F. Gwynn

Date of Award

Summer 1964

Document Type

Thesis - campus only access


© 1964 Sherman Daryl Birney


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