South Korean teachers' social-emotional practices and their association with student connectedness : a thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master in Educational Psychology at Massey University, Distance Learning, New Zealand

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Massey University
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Teachers’ social-emotional practices provide a promising avenue for fostering student well-being, particularly in countries such as South Korea where students experience disproportionate levels of stress. Little research has been conducted on teachers’ socialemotional practices internationally, and even less in the South Korean context. In the present research, two studies were conducted with South Korean middle-school students to explore Korean teachers’ social-emotional practices as perceived by students. Data were used to explore the underlying structure of students’ perspectives of teacher behaviours and group these behaviours into cohesive domains and profiles. A refined 88-item version of Harvey et al.’s (2003, 2012) teacher social-emotional behaviour inventory was used. In Study one, 30 students completed a card-sorting task where they sorted 88 social-emotional behaviour items according to perceived similarity. Multidimensional scaling and hierarchical cluster analysis were applied to the data to produce visual representations of the structure of studentperceived teacher social-emotional practices. In Study two, 222 Korean middle-school students completed a rating task wherein they rated the extent to which they perceived their teacher to engage in each of the 88 social-emotional behaviours. A connectedness questionnaire assessing student feelings of connectedness to their teacher, school and peers was also completed. Application of Horn’s parallel analysis and rotated factor analysis on student rating data revealed five factors or themes of teacher social-emotional behaviours, interpreted as Social-emotional coaching, Relationship-building, Classroom and emotion management, Attitude to teaching, and Emotional transference. Then, factor analysis and Qfactor analysis were applied to identify profiles, where each profile represented a group of students who reported similar patterns of teacher behaviours for their homeroom teacher. Hierarchical cluster analysis and k-means cluster analysis were further applied to refine profiles by optimising case assignment to profiles. The resulting eight profiles were labelled: Enthusiastic Manager, Disengaged, Job-focused, Indifferent, Coach, Assured Coach, Transparent Manager, and Relationship-builder and Coach. Finally, the associations between the identified factors and profiles with student connectedness were explored using ANOVA. Results are compared and contrasted with existing literature and discussed with regard to potential usefulness of teacher social-emotional factors and profiles for enhancing student well-being.
Teacher-student relationships, School environment, Middle schools, Social aspects, Belonging (Social psychology) in children, Korea (South)