Date of Award

8-1981

Degree Name

Master of Arts

Department

Psychology

First Advisor

Dr. Jack Michael

Second Advisor

Dr. Dale Brethower

Third Advisor

Dr. Norman Peterson

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Open Access

Abstract

Absenteeism is one of the most expensive and complex problems faced by management. Previous efforts to ameliorate attendance problems have focused on demographical analysis of absent workers, providing information of little value in designing remedial programs. The current project is an analysis of an Attendance Bonus Program in terms of contingencies of reinforcement. Six hundred union employees of a manufacturing plant served as subjects, with two comparison plants of 100 and 600 employees as comparative populations. Analysis of the prevailing contingencies identified a number of deficiencies. Attendance reinforcement aspects were appropriate, but a response criterion needs to be established. The current disciplinary program was both inappropriate in removing workers from production work, and ineffective due to infrequent application. Analysis also identified a strong correlation between weekend premium pay and weekday absences. A thorough behavior analysis of attendance policies allows for the prediction of certain attendance patterns and the design of appropriate remedial programs.

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