Children accept blame for behaviour

17th March 2000 at 00:00
PUPILS are far more willing than teachers to take the blame for bad behaviour in the classroom, researchers have discovered.

Both have different views about the causes of disruptive behaviour, but the children were at least prepared to shoulder some of the responsibility.

They put bad classroom behaviour down to both teachers' unfairness and to pupils' own vulnerabilities. In contrast, teachers are more likely to blame the home and family, rather than school-related factors.

One study found that even where parents had been involved in joint initiatives to tackle poor behaviour, teachers were reluctant to give them credit for success.

The latest findings come from Year 7 pupils at a North-west secondary school who were asked about the causes of bad behaviour in their feederprimary.

Researchers from Nottingham University found they blamed teachers and pupils far more than parents and family, or the strictness of the classroom regime.

Misbehaviour was attributed to teachers when they were felt to have behaved unfairly - picking on pupils or shouting. Blame was levelled at pupils when children were seen as vulnerable, because they could not keep up with work or were led astray.

Researcher Dr Andy Miller, of Nottingham University, said: "These findings will be unpalatable to teachers."

"Pupils' causal attributions for difficult classroom behaviour", by Andy Miller and Eamonn Ferguson, of Nottingham University, and Irene Byrne, of Lancashire educational psychology service, British Journal of Educational Psychology, published this week


Subscribe to get access to the content on this page.

If you are already a Tes/ Tes Scotland subscriber please log in with your username or email address to get full access to our back issues, CPD library and membership plus page.

Not a subscriber? Find out more about our subscription offers.
Subscribe now
Existing subscriber?
Enter subscription number

Comments

The guide by your side – ensuring you are always up to date with the latest in education.

Get Tes magazine online and delivered to your door. Stay up to date with the latest research, teacher innovation and insight, plus classroom tips and techniques with a Tes magazine subscription.
With a Tes magazine subscription you get exclusive access to our CPD library. Including our New Teachers’ special for NQTS, Ed Tech, How to Get a Job, Trip Planner, Ed Biz Special and all Tes back issues.

Subscribe now