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Comparison of popular and lonely students' attitudes, and their relationship to the classroom situation as reported by teachers
University of Borås, School of Education and Behavioural Science.
2014 (English)In: British Journal of Education, Society and Behavioural Science, ISSN 2278-0998, Vol. 4, no 7, 897-921 p.Article in journal (Refereed)
Sustainable development
The content falls within the scope of Sustainable Development
Abstract [en]

Aims: To investigate the attitudinal profiles of Popular and Lonely students in school classes and their similarities and differences, relationships to gender and cultural backgrounds, and the classroom characteristics reported by teachers. Study Design: Self-reports on attitudes were collected from 1531 students representing 77 grade 6 classes from comprehensive schools in the city of Göteborg, Sweden. The students were asked to answer 40 questions, each with five possible responses. Each student was asked to rank the three peers they would most prefer to work with in the classroom and to play with during breaks. In addition, data was gathered from the teacher of each class. Place and Duration of Study: Sampling of all data autumn 2003. Work up of sociometric data 2013. Methodology: Based on a previous two-level confirmatory factor analysis, three school factors and four relational factors were identified. Weighted adjacency matrices were used to quantify social relationships. The eigenvector of the largest eigenvalue of each adjacency matrix yielded individual indices drawn from the eigenvector components and a group index from the eigenvalue. Symmetrized matrices were used to reveal the most popular individuals in each network. Lonely individuals were outliers who were not nominated by other students and were identified based on bilateral choices using semi-symmetrized matrices. Results: Popular (11.5%) and Lonely (8.5%) students have similar attitudes to school and teachers. Around 10% of both groups had very positive attitudes for all factors. However, lonely students were three times likelier than popular students to have negative attitudes and also expressed more anxiety, considered disruption to be more common, and sometimes reported problematic relationships with their classmates and peers. Half of the popular students had negative or neutral attitudes to school factors and 40% had negative or neutral scores for relational factors. Conclusion: The working conditions were most positive in classrooms with only one large peer group and a minimum of Lonely students.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Sciencedomain International , 2014. Vol. 4, no 7, 897-921 p.
Keyword [en]
attitudes, classroom interaction, lonely students, popular students
Keyword [sv]
pedagogiskt arbete
National Category
Pedagogical Work
Research subject
Teacher Education and Education Work
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hb:diva-1846Local ID: 2320/13617OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hb-1846DiVA: diva2:869924
Available from: 2015-11-13 Created: 2015-11-13

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Citation style
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