The Effect Of Husband Inclusion In Assertiveness Training For Married Women

Date of Award




Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)


Counseling Psychology


Purpose. This study examined the effect of husband's inclusion in assertiveness training for married women by comparing groups in which husbands were and were not included. It was predicted that husband inclusion would facilitate assertiveness training and produce a greater increase in the wife's assertion and a greater decrease in her aggression, passivity and passive-aggression. To enhance the generalizability of the assertiveness training program, multiple trainer team effects were investigated.Procedure. Twenty-eight couples were randomly assigned to one of three groups: Couples (husbands and wives trained together); Wives Only (only wives trained); and a No-Treatment Control group. Measures of self-reported assertiveness (Assertiveness Scale for Couples) and behavioral assertiveness (Inventory of Marital Conflict) were obtained from each subject before and after training. Post-Pre treatment difference scores on each of the four scales of each instrument (assertion, aggression, passivity and passive-aggression) were obtained and analyzed using analyses of variance. Pretreatment marital satisfaction was assessed using the Locke-Wallace Marital Adjustment Scale.Review of the Findings. There was no significant difference in pretreatment marital satisfaction between women in any of the three groups. Women in either assertiveness training group showed significant increases in self-reported assertion and significant decreases in self-reported passivity, compared to women in the control group. No training effects were observed on any of the four behavioral measures. There was no significant difference in the increase in self-reported assertion between the two treatment groups. Women in the Wives Only group showed a significantly greater decrease in self-reported passivity compared to women in the Couples group. No trainer team effects were observed. Significant treatment-trainer team interaction effects were found on measures of self-reported assertion and self-reported passive-aggression.Conclusion and Discussion. Inclusion of the husband in the wife's assertiveness training does not produce the increase in effectiveness anticipated. With the husband present, the training is less effective in reducing passivity and equally effective in increasing assertion. One trainer team was significantly more effective in training couples while the other was more effective in training women only, as determined by several measures.


Psychology, Clinical

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