Relationships with special needs students: exploring primary teachers' descriptions

Lopez, Chevon and Corcoran, Timothy 2014, Relationships with special needs students: exploring primary teachers' descriptions, International journal of inclusive education, vol. 18, no. 12, pp. 1304-1320, doi: 10.1080/13603116.2014.897385.

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Title Relationships with special needs students: exploring primary teachers' descriptions
Author(s) Lopez, Chevon
Corcoran, TimothyORCID iD for Corcoran, Timothy
Journal name International journal of inclusive education
Volume number 18
Issue number 12
Start page 1304
End page 1320
Total pages 17
Publisher Taylor and Francis
Place of publication Abingdon, Eng.
Publication date 2014-12
ISSN 1464-5173
Keyword(s) Inclusive education
Special needs
teacher–student relationships
Summary Positive teacher-student relationships play an established role in the developmental outcomes of students. Ongoing research suggests that positive teacher-student relationships may be particularly beneficial for students with special educational needs [Baker, J. A. 2006. "Contributions of Teacher-Child Relationships to Positive School Adjustment During Elementary School."Journal of School Psychology 44 (3): 211-229]. However, particular learning and behavioural characteristics are known to pose certain challenges when developing these relationships. For instance, teachers may have difficulty in forming close relationships with students who behave in a hostile way. Likewise, they might feel stressed with students who take longer to learn material [Baker 2006; Yoon, J. S. 2002. "Teacher Characteristics as Predictors of Teacher-Student Relationships: Stress, Negative Affect and Self Efficacy." Social Behaviour and Personality 30: 485-494]. This study conducted a focus group with six mainstream teachers from a primary school in the Western Suburbs of Melbourne to investigate the following questions: (1) How do primary school teachers describe their relationships with special needs students? (2) Are these descriptions substantively different from the way in which relationships with non-special needs students are described? And (3) what, if any, are teachers' reported concerns with inclusive education practice? Thematic analysis provided three primary themes and nine secondary themes, indicating that in the context of inclusive practices, the quality of teacher-student relationships is affected by a combination of psychosocial factors. In concurrence with previous literature, the use of qualitative methodology was considered optimal for exploring teachers' descriptions.
Language eng
DOI 10.1080/13603116.2014.897385
Field of Research 130312 Special Education and Disability
1303 Specialist Studies In Education
Socio Economic Objective 930202 Teacher and Instructor Development
HERDC Research category C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Copyright notice ©2014, Taylor and Francis
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Collections: Faculty of Arts and Education
School of Education
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