Boundary Dilemmas in Teacher–Student Relationships: Struggling with “The Line”

May. 10, 2009

Source: Teaching and Teacher Education, Volume 25, Issue 5, pages 636-646 (July 2009).

The teacher–student relationship is viewed as integral to successful teaching and learning. However, outside of a few exceptions, ethical boundary issues in this relationship have not been explored. The purpose of this study was to investigate teachers' perspectives of their relationships with their students. Furthermore, the purpose was to examine how the teachers described and negotiated relationship boundaries. Findings were organized into a typology of 11 categories of boundaries. The balance between demonstrating care while maintaining a healthy, productive level of control in the classroom was a recurring theme when discussing the boundaries.

Updated: Jun. 03, 2009