Skip to content Skip to navigation

Gratitude for teachers as a psychological resource for early adolescents: A mixed-methods study

Publication Authors: 
Indrawati Liauw, Rebecca N. Baelen, Robert F. Borah, Alisa Yu & Anne Colby
Publication Year: 
2018 January, online
Publication Journal: 
Journal of Moral Education, DOI: 10.1080/03057240.2017.1415872

In this mixed-methods study, we examine students’ gratitude for their teachers and the implications of that gratitude for their psychological adaptation. We report findings that gratitude for teachers (GT) is, in fact, a resource for students facing difficult circumstances outside school. More specifically, our hierarchical multiple regression models demonstrate that this form of gratitude decreases the negative association between adverse life events and students’ life satisfaction. GT also decreases the positive association between negative life events and students’ perceived stress. Then, we use coded material from student interviews to illustrate how they understand the ways that their GT helps them manage challenges in their personal lives. We conclude that students’ GT buffers the negative impact of adverse life events, because it helps students attend to the positive interactions and mentorship they have with their teachers and maintain focus on their future-oriented goals.

Publication Download: