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ERIC Number: EJ854882
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Jan
Pages: 10
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 22
ISSN: ISSN-1527-9316
Touching Your Students: The Impact of a Handshake on the First Day of Class
Wilson, Janie H.; Stadler, Jonathan R.; Schwartz, Beth M.; Goff, Dennis M.
Journal of the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, v9 n1 p108-117 Jan 2009
Can a simple handshake on the first day of class change student impressions of the instructor and the course? We compared students who received a handshake to those who did not at the first class meeting and evaluated teaching skills, instructor's ability to motivate student interest, and instructor's support of students as a function of touch group and instructor gender. Our findings revealed significantly higher ratings for female instructors than for male instructors when they shook hands, with these differences specific to ratings of instructor skills and instructor's motivation of students. In addition, students with whom male professors shook hands actually rated their professors lower on teaching skill and ability to motivate than those with no handshake. Thus, female professors may establish immediacy through the touch of a handshake, but male professors should avoid this seemingly innocuous touching of students. (Contains 2 tables, 4 footnotes and 2 figures.)
Indiana University. 755 West Michigan Street UL 1180D, Indianapolis, IN 46202. Tel: 317-274-5647; Fax: 317-278-2360; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A