Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)




Faculty of Science

First Advisor

Michael Pratt

Advisor Role

Thesis Supervisor


Research has demonstrated that tutorial use of Vygotsky‘s Zone of Proximal Development during dyadic problem-solving enhances the subsequent, independent performance of the learner. It has also been demonstrated that use of the ZPD can be increased through tutorial use of the contingent pattern of intervention identified by Wood and Middleton (1978). The present study was designed to develop and evaluate one procedure for training mothers to use the contingent pattern of intervention during a dyadic story re-telling task. It was hypothesized that an increase in maternal use of the contingent pattern would result in increased use of the children's ZPD, which, in turn would enhance the children's independent story re-telling skill. The results supported the hypothesis: the training procedure did significantly increase maternal use of the contingent pattern of intervention and external use of the children's ZPD. The children in the trained condition displayed enhanced story re-telling skills in their ability to produce significantly more information from those story grammar constituents of Stein and Glenn's (1978) story grammar found in previous research to be the most central constituents.

Convocation Year


Convocation Season