Token economies have a long research and applied history within clinical settings and classroom education (Kazdin, 1982). However, despite reported successes in improving physical activity behaviors (Alstot, 2012), research examining token reinforcement implemented specifically in physical education is virtually nonexistent. Therefore, the purpose of the current study was to examine the effects of a peer-administered token economy on the jump rope behaviors of elementary physical education students. An alternating treatments design was used to assess the effects of the intervention. Participants were alternated between five baseline and five token economy sessions while response differentiation between the two phases was assessed. Results indicated that nine out of ten participants showed an increase in the number of successful jump rope practice trials during token reinforcement sessions as compared with baseline sessions. Based on the results of the study, it was concluded that peer-administered token economies can be useful tools for physical educators.
Alstot is with the Department of Exercise Science, Pacific University, Forest Grove, OR.