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A prospective investigation of teacher preference and student perceptions of the student-teacher relationship

Project Info

Project Description

Mercer, S. H., & DeRosier, M. E. (2010). A prospective investigation of teacher preference and student perceptions of the student-teacher relationship. Psychology in the Schools, 47, 184-192. doi: 10.1002/pits.20463

This study investigated teacher preference, the degree to which a teacher likes a specific student, as a predictor of students’ perceptions of teacher preference as well as conflict and support in the student-teacher relationship. Child and teacher reports of teacher preference and child reports of conflict and support were provided in the fall and spring of one academic year. Participants included 1,104 fourth-grade students in 10 schools. Results indicated that teacher preference predicted change in children’s perceived teacher preference. In addition, lower levels of teacher preference directly predicted higher subsequent levels of conflict, but not support. Because teacher preference and children’s perceptions of teacher preference were related, lower levels of teacher preference also indirectly predicted higher levels of conflict and lower levels of support. Discussion focuses on the implications of the findings from a dyadic systems conceptualization of student-teacher relationships. © 2009 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

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