WWC review of this study

The Effects of the Good Behavior Game on the Conduct of Regular Education New York City High School Students

Kleinman, Kimberly E., Saigh, Philip A. (2011). Behavior Modification v35 n1 p95-105. Retrieved from: https://eric.ed.gov/?id=EJ909233

  • Single Case Design
    , grade

Reviewed: March 2023

Meets WWC standards with reservations

To view more detailed information about the study findings from this review, please see Good Behavior Game Intervention Report (516 KB)

Evidence Tier rating based solely on this study. This intervention may achieve a higher tier when combined with the full body of evidence.

Characteristics of study sample as reported by study author.

  • Female: 42%
    Male: 58%

  • Urban
    • B
    • A
    • C
    • D
    • E
    • F
    • G
    • I
    • H
    • J
    • K
    • L
    • P
    • M
    • N
    • O
    • Q
    • R
    • S
    • V
    • U
    • T
    • W
    • X
    • Z
    • Y
    • a
    • h
    • i
    • b
    • d
    • e
    • f
    • c
    • g
    • j
    • k
    • l
    • m
    • n
    • o
    • p
    • q
    • r
    • s
    • t
    • u
    • x
    • w
    • y

    New York
  • Race
    Other or unknown
  • Ethnicity
    Not Hispanic or Latino    
  • Eligible for Free and Reduced Price Lunch
    Free or reduced price lunch (FRPL)    
    No FRPL    


The study took place in a grade 9 history class in one public high school in Harlem, New York City.

Study sample

Participants included 26 students in one classroom in grade 9. Most students (73%) were Hispanic or Latino. Almost one-fourth (23%) were Black and the rest did not report their race. More than half (58%) were male, and 88% were enrolled in the free or reduced-price lunch program.

Intervention Group

The Good Behavior Game is a classroom management strategy that promotes students collaborating together to create a positive learning environment. Students are placed into teams and are rewarded for demonstrating appropriate behaviors and not violating classroom rules. In this study, the teacher divided the class into two teams and rearranged their seats on opposite sides of the classroom. The teacher informed students they would have an opportunity to participate in a competition for prizes, and then described classroom expectations and rules related to talking, aggression, and moving around the classroom. The teacher displayed these expectations on the front wall of the class. During each session, the teacher read the list of expectations aloud and explained he would verbally identify any students who misbehaved. When students broke a rule, the teacher called out the misbehavior and added a check on the board under the relevant team. At the end of each session, the team with the fewest checkmarks won a piece of candy. At the end of the week, the team with the fewest marks received a pizza or cupcake party. Sessions took place over 2 weeks during history lessons that lasted 30 to 60 minutes.

Comparison Group

There is no comparison group in single case designs. In the baseline and withdrawal phases of the single case design, the teacher divided the classroom into the two teams used for Good Behavior Game and then instructed the classroom in the typical manner. The teacher displayed classroom expectations related to talking, aggression, and moving around the classroom on the front wall of the class and read them aloud at the beginning of each session. Rule violations were handled as usual, with verbal reprimands or expulsion from the classroom.

Support for implementation

The researcher trained the teacher how to implement Good Behavior Game, but the details of the training are not provided.


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