Attachment Study

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Jurnal Pendidik dan Pendidikan, Jil. 24, 55–72, 2009

TEACHER-STUDENT ATTACHMENT AND TEACHERS’ ATTITUDES TOWARDS WORK Affizal Ahmad and Rafidah Sahak School of Health Sciences Universiti Sains Malaysia 16150 Kubang Kerian, Kelantan E-mail: affizal@kb.usm.my

Abstract: This study examines the relationship between teacher-student attachment and teachers’ attitude towards work. We show that teacher-student attachment and teachers’ attitudes towards work appear critical in promoting and maintaining positive teacher behaviours. Communication connects students with teachers, improving the classroom atmosphere. Teachers who communicate effectively with their students can give them appropriate and helpful feedback. Teacher-student interaction is extremely important for a successful relationship through the entire school year. Keywords: teacher, student, attachment, attitude, work Abstrak: Tujuan kajian ini adalah untuk menguji hubungan di antara perapatan gurumurid dan sikap guru terhadap kerja. Kajian ini menunjukkan bahawa perapatan gurumurid dan sikap guru terhadap kerja kelihatan amat penting dalam mempromosikan dan mengekalkan tingkahlaku guru yang positif. Komunikasi di antara pelajar dan guru menyumbang kepada ikatan di antara kedua mereka, yang menyediakan atmosfera yang baik untuk persekitaran bilik darjah. Guru, yang berkomunikasi secara efektif dengan pelajar mereka, memberi maklum balas yang betul dan membantu pelajar. Interaksi gurumurid menjadi amat penting untuk suatu hubungan yang berjaya di sepanjang masa tahun persekolahan. Kata kunci: guru, murid, perapatan, sikap, kerja

INTRODUCTION Teachers are expected to be positive role models for their students, both inside and outside the classroom. Rose (2005) has examined the role of educators as role models in formal and informal education, and stressed that role models can expose groups to specific attitudes, lifestyles and outlooks. Children often see teachers as important role models on par with parents (Rose, 2005). According to Carr (2000), teachers, regardless of subject area, have a moral role to play in education. It is the teachers’ duty to be socially acceptable by keeping themselves morally upright, refraining from gambling, abhorring drunkenness and other excesses, and avoiding immoral relations. 55

Affizal Ahmad and Rafidah Sahak

Referring to Sava (2001), teachers’ actions could actually have some lasting negative effects on students. Unfortunately, on top of that, Kearney, Plax, Hays and Iveys (1991) reported that researchers often tend to overlook teachers as a potential source of problems in the classroom. Compared to the large body of literature that focuses on positive teacher communication behaviours, fewer studies have been done on negative teacher communication behaviours (Wanzer & McCroskey, 1998). Concurrently, educational reform tends to focus only on curricula, neglecting the importance of effective teacher-student interaction. Teacher support can be conceptualised similarly to social support in schools, which is strongly related to a student’s psychological well-being (acceptance, care, encouragement and approval from others) and may improve students' selfesteem and self-evaluation (Sava, 2001). On the other hand Bru, Boyesen, Munthe and Roland (1998) asserted that lack of teacher support would hinder students from developing a positive self-concept. Despite all these compelling reasons to study teachers’ behaviour, researching negative teacher-student interactions is often considered a taboo, which can make study in this area difficult (Poenaru & Sava, 1998). Besides, according to Sava (2001), it is ironic to study a teacher’s mistakes or faulty education when their primary aim is to be educational agents. Unfortunately, studying the characteristics of effective teachers will not give us all the elements necessary to understand teacher misbehaviour (Sava, 2001). However, it might give us a better understanding and provide a...
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