Transactional Analysis in Education Educational Transactional Analysis Essay

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Transactional Analysis in Education

Educational Transactional Analysis is the area for this case study example where the client is a school that is experiencing a rise in unruly delinquent behaviors. The purpose of the case study is to assist the school with finding ways to deal with the students that is conducive to changing their behaviors creating a learning environment. The study will also show how an TA in education can benefit educators in a teaching and learning setting . There are a number of reference books that show that this theory is beneficial to educators. For example Improve Behavior and Raising Self-Esteem was one text that brought out advantages of TA in the classroom (Barrow, Newton, and Bradshaw, 2001). The experience will allow students and teachers to experience improved communication by providing tools and resources to bridge gaps (Barrow, Newton, and Bradshaw, 2001, 5). This is accomplished by using language that has is based on the decision model and common strategies relative to psychology in education. By using TA concepts the ability of teachers in enhanced and strengthened providing additional footing from which to launch curriculum goals and objectives (Barrow, Newton, and Bradshaw, 2001). Additional evidence of the success of using TA in education is supplied by Hellaby, who taught for more than 20 years using the methods (Hellaby, 2004, 15). The self-esteem and academic achievement of students under the method improved greatly according to results shown in the grades and behavioral progress. Using the models from concepts such as stroking, and ego states, the improvement was remarkable according to Shotton (2008, 22). The ability to understand students on a cultural level in addition to academic or behavioral premise became a major advantage in changing behaviors leading to entirely new life scripts (Shotton, 2008). Some other researchers that use TA in an educational setting and experienced major improvements with students are Harding that used the method in tutoring with individual students (Harding, 2004, 47). In another study Wye used permissions and drivers with junior high students in teaching about bullying (2004, 7).

The evidence of the success of the work of these researchers was a decrease in the number of necessary detentions. Better attendance and fewer needs for major interventions whereby the student has to be removed from class (Wye, 2004). Some comments of students were that 'ego states really helped to consider how another person would react if treated the same way', then redirecting the behavior. In this case the contract will provide a framework by setting expectations of participants.

TA Application


In order for Transactional analysis to be successful it is necessary for all participants to agree mutually to certain changes as an outcome of the practice. The assumption is that participants are able to identify what that change is and agreeable to taking steps to initiate and precipitate change. The contract involves a written agreement as to the expectations of participants between the client, TA educator, or therapists taking part in the program (Klein, 1980).

The contract with the students involves them communicating with the teachers by addressing them by their surname and last name. Both teachers and students will participate in the TA study.

First, the time frame will be for a total of 10 sessions with a reduction in the number of outbursts, altercations, and violent behavioral episodes between students diminishing by at least 25%.

Second students are expected to share incidents that occur where bullying is observed, experienced, or even initiated, with no threat of repercussion by adults within reason (i.e. A person is physically harmed).

Third each incident will documented by all participants in a journal that each carries daily.

Fourth all will collaborate each Friday with other participants, TA therapists to discuss and document the week's activities.

Fifth all participants will undergo training in TA concepts and tools during the ten weeks.

There are varying ages and capabilities that each student possesses. The team that will provide the facilitation and training will attempt to engage all participants using inclusive open activities. The sessions were designed so that the teachers would receive instruction about a new concept prior to the students. In the actual study this was modified when adults recognized that the students were able to grasp concepts faster and could explain it to them.

Developing the Research

The methodology was given to Freshman and Sophomore High School students. With accreditation from the Institute of Development Transactional Analysis using the TAPACY (ie. The Transaction Analysis Proficiency Award to Children, Young Adults)

program (Stuart & Agar, 2008). The comments from the students were encouraging specifically when using the ego states model that helped with improving communication skills. The students noticed not only better communication at school but also with parents at home (Klein, 1980). Both the teachers and parents reported that the successes of the students warranted recognition for their behavioral improvements.

The only problem was the fact that after the ten sessions, the students were put in their former classrooms without TA support. The failure to institute a curriculum that included the TAPACY program for the long-term, was a shortcoming that short circuited the ability to sustain success over the long-term. However the data collected was evidence enough to persuade educators to consider a longer term program using TA in the future


The methodology was based in practical application with the primary research question being "How will TA concepts help to better the behavior of students and improve communication between teachers and children in schools?"

The counselor directs the client in this case the teachers in how to assist schools by dealing with behavioral issues the TA way in day-to-day situations. As benefits were identified, they would provide material around which to design practical application or pedagogy (Stuart & Agar, 2008). In conjunction with application the communication concepts are to be presented to students, along with the skills for achievement provided by the teachers.

Participants of the Study is 24 students half male and the other half female. The adults in the program were six teachers and two student teachers. The teachers were all female. Primarily to reflect the level of emotional intellectual aptitude being higher for females than males. The only issue with this particular sample is that the inclusion of male teachers may have shown a difference in the delivery method of the program (Stuart & Agar, 2008).

Collecting Data

Document all findings and observances during the study

Interview the participants

Catalog the feedback received from participants

Have discussions about concepts and how they were applied

Take video of the concepts being used and the response of participants


The use of strokes is employed to obtain a positive response from participants. Students need positive reinforcement when they have behaved well and also corrective action in a positive light when misbehaving. The need for interpersonal recognitions by teachers of students is important to them. Though oftentimes people do not admit to the need for strokes, they have been observed as a necessity in order to thrive in relationships (Berne, 1964). The ability to comprehend what type of strokes are needed at what time in response to which behavior can lead to changes in behavioral patterns. When teachers employ positive strokes, the students will identify that with a behavioral response. Likewise if a teacher employs a negative stroke the student may respond in an unhealthy way. In order to change how students behave in the classroom it is important to recognize the power behind this ability when working through transactional analysis (Berne, 1964).

Ego States

There are three basic ego states in the lives of human beings according to Eric Berne (1964). The way relationships are defined depends on recognition of which state the participant is in when communications take place. These ego states comprise the spectrum of human psyche including ideas, perceptions, feelings, and behaviors. Each of the ego states are made up of a range of these characteristics in relation to an inherent system of learned response. The three states include Parent, Adult, and Child ego from which the entire origin of transaction analysis is based.

Structural States

(James, 1973).

Life Scripts

In order to survive early in life in fact during childhood years, people set up behaviors based on self-image and preconceived boundaries or limits. The boundaries are created in order to survive early in life, according to Berne, and can result in 'self limiting decision (Berne, 1964). They make up the life script of an individual or patterned behavior based on early self-image and if left unchanged, can remain with a person throughout their entire life. Berne refers to these preconceived responses and behaviors as a life script that determine how a person lives from childhood through their entire existence till death (James, 1973). Transactional Analysis is designed to reframe the consciousness of an individual to transform the negative or dysfunctional aspects of a life script, transforming them to correcting self affirming and violent behavioral tendencies.

Games Karpman's

Where there are dysfunctional behaviors, certain…

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