Graduate Thesis Or Dissertation

 

Visually perceived nonverbal behaviors of teachers and their relationship to affective responses of students Public Deposited

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  • This investigation was designed to measure certain visually perceived nonverbal behaviors of teachers in an effort to learn the relationships between these behaviors and the affective responses of students to the teachers, To this end, teachers were videotaped, and the tapes were shown to students for their affective responses. Thirty teachers, at different grade levels and with different subject matter affiliations, were videotaped while teaching one of their own classes. These tapes, ranging from 15 to 35 minutes in length, were edited to produce two taped episodes of five minutes duration for each teacher. In addition, 15-second segments, to be used as measures of first impressions, were prepared for each teacher. To measure the nonverbal behaviors displayed by the teachers an instrument for coding the behaviors was developed. The reliability of the instrument was established on the basis of computed coefficients of interobserver agreement. A total of 879 students in grades seven through nine, none of whom were familiar with the teachers who appeared in the videotapes, were shown the videotapes of the teachers. No sound accompanied the visual images of the teachers. Thus only visual information was available for the establishment of affective responses. Each student supplied an affective rating for each teacher viewed. For this purpose, a semantic differential scale, with the expressions Liked Very Much and Disliked Very Much at the respective poles of the scale, was employed. In addition, students were asked to record the teacher characteristics, on which they had based their affective ratings, on a data card which was turned in to the investigator. Approximately half of the students supplied affective ratings, but no comments, to the first impression segments for each teacher. When the nonverbal behaviors displayed on the teacher tapes had all been coded by means of the nonverbal behavior instrument and mean values of student affective responses to each teacher had been determined, all of the data were transferred to computer cards and analyzed by means of a stepwise multiple regression analysis program. Separate analyses were performed to determine (a) the reliability of the nonverbal behavior instrument, (b) the identity of nonverbal behaviors which would serve as significant predictors of student affective response, and (c) whether students were consciously aware of the teacher nonverbal behaviors when they made their affective ratings of the teachers. Findings 1. On the basis,Of satisfactorily high coefficients of interobserver agreement the instrument employed in the investigation was judged to be a reliable measure of teacher nonverbal behaviors. The overall Tr value for the instrument was . 79. Z. The teacher nonverbal behaviors were analyzed in relation to student affective response in terms of both frequency and duration measurements of the behaviors, separately and in combination. When analyzed in combination the duration measures consistently proved to be better predictors than the frequency measures and it was concluded that the relationship between student affective responses and teacher nonverbal behavior can be predicted more effectively when the teachers' nonverbal behaviors are measured in terms of their duration. 3. Analysis of the combined affective responses of boys and girls to the teachers indicated that regardless of the sex of the respondent, students showed a higher degree of liking for teachers who smiled often and who held up books, photographs, etc. for the class to inspect. 4. When boys' and girls' affective responses were analyzed separately and compared, differences related to sex became apparent. Boys tended to show a higher degree of liking for teachers who were younger and who employed more gestures while teaching. Girls appeared to base their affective responses on first impressions more than did boys. Also, girls preferred teachers who seldom manipulated objects while teaching. 5. A significant difference between the number of students who reported nonverbal behaviors as the basis of their affective ratings of the teachers and those who failed to report such behaviors, seemed to indicate that students tend to make affective judgments in the absence of consciously perceived awareness of the teachers' specific nonverbal behaviors.
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