Territoriality in educational settings : a thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Arts in Education

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Massey University
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The concern of this thesis was territorial behaviours in classroom settings, namely: 1. The teacher's use of geographic space, and 2. Verbal interaction patterns resulting from teacher - pupil exchanges. One expectation held was that the teacher would occupy a particular location in preference to all other areas. Another expection was that the centre of the classroom would be the focus for interaction between the teacher and pupils, with diminishing numbers of verbal exchanges toward the outer edges of the room. The effects of changing the pupils' location was also investigated it being thought that following such change the number of interactions received by the pupils would vary considerably. Observations were made in two classrooms and data collected. A trained Observer recorded the teacher's use of classroom space and the pupil 'targets' of all verbal exchanges between teacher and individual pupils. The verbal behaviour of the teacher was recorded and later encoded into five qualitative categories. Analysis of these data revealed that: (a) both teachers occupied the centre front of the room in preference to all other areas. (b) the distribution of verbal interactions by the teachers was uneven, and (c) the changing of pupil location had inconclusive effects upon the numbers of verbal exchanges they participated in. The teacher's verbal behaviour, when considered qualitatively, was found to be little affected by the position occupied by the teacher and was democratically distributed over the classroom.
Teacher-student relationships