Childhood aggression in schools: The impact of behavioral patterns and contextual influences on teachers' cognitive, affective, and behavioral responses

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Virginia Tech

Despite considerable advances in the development and implementation of school-based interventions, aggressive behavior in schools remains a significant problem for both educators and the community as a whole. The present study was designed to examine possible contextual influences on the course and treatment of aggression in schools, in an effort to inform future intervention development. The aim of the present study was to examine possible influences on teachers' response to reactive and proactive aggression in the classroom, and test the applicability of Weiner's attributional model of motivation and emotion. A sample of 121 middle school teachers completed self-report measures of teaching characteristics, efficacy, stress, and burnout. They also responded to four vignettes of student aggression with measurements of proposed attributions, affective reactions, and interventions. A series of ANOVAs showed that teacher's proposed responses differed as a function of child aggression subtype, teacher stress, burnout, efficacy, and training. Multiple regression analyses were used to test Weiner's theoretical model, as well as consider the moderating influence of teacher characteristics. Findings failed to support the application of Weiner's model to the current sample. Alternative patterns of moderation and mediation were significant, however. Implications of study findings were discussed as they relate to relevant theoretical models and recent advances in clinical and educational research.

School, Teachers, Proactive, Aggression, Reactive, Attributions