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Discipline

  • By: George G. Bear
  • In: Encyclopedia of School Psychology
  • Edited by: Steven W. Lee
  • Subject:School/Educational Psychology (general), School Psychology, Educational Psychology

In both definition and practice there are two common sides to school discipline. The first side is teaching or training to develop moral character (i.e., self-discipline). The second is training or treatment to correct or control behavior. Traditionally, schools have valued both. That is, throughout the history of education in the United States, schools have strived not only to govern students but also to develop the knowledge, values, moral reasoning, and skills that reflect the personal qualities of self-control, responsibility, and autonomy (i.e., self-regulation).

Although developing self-discipline and correcting misbehavior comprise the two most traditional components of comprehensive school discipline, two other components are found in most schools: preventing misbehavior with effective classroom management and addressing or remediating chronic and serious behavior problems (Bear, 2005). These ...

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