WWC review of this study

The Effects of the Good Behavior Game with General-Education High School Students

Mitchell, Rachel R.; Tingstrom, Daniel H.; Dufrene, Brad A.; Ford, W. Blake; Sterling, Heather E. (2015). School Psychology Review, v44 n2 p191-207. Retrieved from: https://eric.ed.gov/?id=EJ1141382

  • Single Case Design
    , grades

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: 48%
    Male: 52%
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  • Race
    Other or unknown
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  • 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 two general education classrooms in one high school in the southeastern United States.

Study sample

This review focuses on the reversal-withdrawal single case designs for two classrooms, "Classroom A" and "Classroom C." Participants included 44 students in grades 9–12. Most students in the sample were Black (91%), 7% were biracial or had no race provided, and 2% were White. Two percent were Hispanic or Latino. About 52% of students were male, and across the entire school, 89% of students were eligible for free or reduced-price lunch.

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 teachers introduced Good Behavior Game as a team competition and used a script to outline expectations and the rules of the game. During each session, teachers added a checkmark to the team’s name on a board at the front of the class each time a student engaged in disruptive behavior, such as leaving their seat without permission or being off task. To win the competition, teams had to have fewer checkmarks than the criterion set before the game. Winning teams received extra credit points, homework passes, free time, food, or school supplies. The 20-minute sessions took place during algebra and Spanish classes two to three times a week for an unspecified number of weeks.

Comparison Group

There is no comparison group in single case designs. In the baseline and withdrawal phases of the single case design, the teachers instructed their classrooms in the typical manner.

Support for implementation

The researchers trained teachers during their planning periods by describing how to introduce the Good Behavior Game with a script, modeling the steps, and by providing teachers a chance to practice. Researchers also gave teachers feedback on their practice sessions.


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