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ERIC Number: ED539687
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2011
Pages: 334
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-2672-2065-3
Caring Student-Teacher Relationships: Perspectives of Students with Emotional Disabilities and Their Teachers
Glass, Mary-Elizabeth
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, The University of Wisconsin - Madison
The purpose of this study was to provide insight into the caring student-teacher relationships between students with disabilities and their teachers. Specifically, this study examined two different, yet related ideas. The first research question addresses how middle school students with emotional disabilities and their teachers described and enacted caring in their relationships with one another within the context of school. The second research question focuses on identifying factors that contribute to and militate against the development and maintenance of caring student-teacher relationships. Exploratory in nature, this study utilized qualitative case study methodology. Participants included three students with emotional disabilities and their teachers from the same middle school. Multiple sources of data were collected, including in-depth interviews with students and teachers and classroom observations. Findings show that, while some similarities exist between how students and teachers described and enacted caring, there are also several key differences. These differences include how participants described their caring relationships with one another. Students and teacher descriptions of their caring relationships lack the depth and quality described in much of the literature on caring. In addition, participants categorize their caring relationships as either academically or academically/individually caring, with participants valuing academically caring relationships more than individually. In many ways, participants in this study described their caring relationships with one another as being rooted in their roles as students and teachers. Participants emphasized that in addition to focusing on enhancing student learning, caring relationships were meaningful and required trust within the dyad. Significant discrepancies exist between how teachers and students described their relationships. Participants identified various factors that impacted their ability to develop and/or maintain caring relationships with one another. These factors were believed to have a positive, negative, or neutralizing influence on the relationship, and were viewed as impacting the student-teacher relationship in complex ways. The implications of the findings from this study are examined as they relate to current research literature. It also includes recommendations for improving caring student-teacher relationships. As little research currently exists on this subject, this study also suggests several new directions for future research. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
ProQuest LLC. 789 East Eisenhower Parkway, P.O. Box 1346, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Tel: 800-521-0600; Web site:
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Middle Schools
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A