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The interpersonal rapport dimension of pedagogy in the adult ESL classroom and its influence on student satisfaction and performance

Posted on:2001-01-25Degree:Ph.DType:Dissertation
University:University of KansasCandidate:Matlock, Davee LouFull Text:PDF
The main research question of this study was "What role does teacher/student rapport play in the adult ESL classroom?" This question focused the study around teachers' perceptions and strategies about rapport building in the classroom.; This study was based on qualitative classroom observation of teachers' rapport building strategies as well as teacher interviews. Through comparative analysis of the observations, I identified several themes related to rapport building behavior in the ESL classroom. These themes included (a) "break the ice" behaviors, (b) comfort behaviors, (c) partnering behaviors, (d) partnering behaviors, (e) trust behaviors, and (f) warmth behaviors. Teachers were interviewed in order to augment and triangulate classroom observations. Teachers were given the opportunity to comment on the themes identified in the observations. Finally, a document review of student evaluations of these same teachers was used to confirm how the teachers were being evaluated by their students.; The participants in the study included 7 out of 13 possible teachers who were currently teaching at a mid-western university intensive English program. These teachers included men and women. They were both full and part-time employees, and some were teaching more than one class while others were teaching only one class.; Teachers in this study used a great number of rapport building behaviors in the classroom. Some teachers to relied heavily on a few strategies while others used a variety. There were many effective behaviors. These include smiling, nodding, using humor, showing personal interest, having challenging lessons, using peer help and sharing personal information with students. Some of these behaviors were also seen as risky by some teachers, and a few were used ineffectively.; Interviews revealed that most of the teachers were aware of their own rapport building strategies. Teachers identified rapport as one of three key elements in effective teaching and indicated that good rapport reduced student anxiety and increased student motivation.; This study concludes with my recommendation that teacher/student rapport become an area of focus in teacher training and that more research be done in the areas of rapport, anxiety, and motivation in the second language classroom.
Keywords/Search Tags:Rapport, Classroom, Student, Teachers, Behaviors
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