Study: Good Student-Teacher Relationships Benefit Students’ Health

Category: Education/Family


Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article.

  1. transition / trænˈzɪʃ ən / (v) – to change from one place, condition, etc. to another

    The company is transitioning to work from home.

  2. adulthood / əˈdʌlt hʊd / (n) – the period in which someone is fully grown or has reached maturity

    Rose’s health started to decline when she reached adulthood.

  3. peer / pɪər / (n) – someone who belongs to the same age, grade, or status group

    Jackson isn’t spending enough time with his peers because of his after-school activities.

  4. empathetic / ˌɛm pəˈθɛt ɪk / (adj) – having the ability to understand the thoughts and feelings of others

    Maria was attentive, empathetic, and kind as a child.

  5. supportive / səˈpɔr tɪv / (adj) – providing help or aid to someone

    I’m glad that my family has always been supportive of my acting career.


Read the text below.

A recent study found that students who have good relationships with their teachers have better health as adults.

Earlier studies proposed that teenagers’ social relations might affect their physical and mental health as they transition to adulthood. However, these studies did not prove whether or not socialization results in well-being.

The current research analyzed data from a previous study that observed almost 20,000 American children for 13 years, starting from early school into their early adulthood. The participants periodically answered surveys asking about their relationships with their peers and teachers. Their physical health was also measured as they reached adulthood.

Results showed that participants who had positive relationships with their teachers also had better physical and mental health in their adult years. However, the same link was not found in student-to-student relations.

According to one educator who was not involved in the study, student-to-student relationships are beneficial. However, one’s peers may not always be as empathetic as teachers, who listen and give advice, often with no judgment.

Study author Jinho Kim said that the findings show the importance of student and teacher relationships. He believes that it is vital for schools to train teachers how to build warm and supportive environments for their students. He also advises parents to encourage their children to ask their teachers for help when needed.

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.

Discussion A

• What does a good student and teacher relationship look like? Explain.
• Do you think teachers in your country build a warm and supportive environment for their students? Why or why not?

Discussion B

• Do you think it is okay for a teacher to be very strict to their students? Explain.
• Some people say that teachers are the second parents. Do you agree with this? Why or why not?