Teachers´ characteristics and development of students´ attitudes towards school
This paper addresses two issues: secondary school teachers' characteristics and the impact of these characteristics on pupils' perceptions of school. Study explored the characteristics of high school teachers in Niš (Serbia) as perceived by high school students. A comparison was made between views on their teachers characteristics expressed by two groups of students: vocational schools students and students attending grammar schools. When it comes to the impact of teachers' characteristics on student's perceptions of school, personal characteristics, professional characteristics and teacher's behavior were taken into consideration. A total of 448 students completed three Likert scales that were developed for the purpose of the study (a scale for measuring student's perception of the presence of certain qualities among teachers, a scale for measuring teachers' effort to encourage prosocial behavior and a scale for measuring student's attitude toward school). The study showed significant difference between vocational school teachers' characteristics and characteristics of teachers who work in grammar schools. The positive correlation between students' perceptions of teachers' characteristics and students' attitudes toward school was also confirmed. The positive impact of teachers who possess professional and personal qualities reflects on students by encouraging student's motivation to go to school, reducing the feeling of pressure in school, improving student's perception of school atmosphere and reducing the absence from classes.