Date Awarded


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)




James H. Stronge


This research study was focused on teacher dispositions and practices that create positive teacher-student relationships with African-American elementary male students. Robert Pianta's work on relationships between teachers and students, over the past decade, provided a conceptual framework for this specific study. A review of the literature on this topic evidenced practices that positively and negatively impact teacher-student relationships. Through classroom observations and interviews, the perceptions of elementary teachers were examined on how they actually create teacher-student relationships with their African-American male students. These perceptions were insightful and often supported in the research literature. Effective teachers understand the need for praise, having high expectations, and provision of additional care and understanding for African-American male students. Although there is still a need for additional research to further explore teacher practices and the creation of positive teacher-student relationships in schools, there is assurance in the existence of teachers that implement practices that create a positive difference in the lives of African-American male students.



© The Author