Date of Completion


Embargo Period



playground, recess, behavior, active supervision, self-management

Major Advisor

Brandi Simonsen

Associate Advisor

George Sugai

Associate Advisor

Jen Freeman

Field of Study

Educational Psychology


Doctor of Philosophy

Open Access

Open Access


Aggressive behaviors are garnering a great deal of national attention in research, policy, and practice circles. The majority of these problematic behaviors occur in non-classroom settings, where students outnumber staff and structure is lacking. Although strategies, like active supervision, are effective at reducing problem behavior in these settings, adults often miss opportunities to implement these strategies to achieve desired results. Project RECESS (Restructuring Environmental Contingencies and Enhancing Self-Managed Supervision) introduces a behavioral approach to increase adult active supervision through the use of self-management. Specifically, four recess supervisors participated in a brief training on active supervision and engaged in self-management by filling out a supervision checklist and direct behavior ratings (DBR). Using a multiple baseline across participants design, I introduced the intervention to participants in a randomly assigned order, and I examined the fidelity, effects (measured by direct observations of staff and students and recordings of interactions), and social validity of the RECESS intervention. Results suggest that the brief training and self-management may be associated with increases in some of the active supervision interactions, specifically prompting and praising. There was no change in students’ problematic behavior, although it was at low levels through each phase. This exploratory study has potential implications for schools, and researchers.