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Streaming and Students’ Self-Esteem: A Qualitative Study on Teachers’ Correspondence Bias

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Author(s): Prihadi Kususanto Chin Sook Fui

Journal: Journal of Educational, Health and Community Psychology
ISSN 2088-3129

Volume: 1;
Issue: 2;
Date: 2013;
Original page

ABSTRACT
This  study  was  aimed  to  investigate  the  effect  of  students’ streaming  practice  in  Malaysian  secondary  on  students’  self-esteem  through teachers’ expectancy.   17 teachers and 20 students from art and science streams of secondary schools  in  Penang,  Malaysia  were  participated  in  this  study.  Unstructured interviews  were  used  on  teachers  to  collect  the  qualitative  data  of  teachers’ expectancy.  The  participating  students  were  from  the  fourth  year  of  secondary school  in  Malaysian  school  system  (between  16-17  years  old,  10  from  science stream  and  10  from  arts  stream)  were  interviewed  in  order  to  collect  the qualitative data of teachers’ perceived behavior and self-esteem. Result  of  this  study  shown  that  teachers  expected  science  stream students to have good academic performance but expected arts stream students to  be  involved  in  disciplinary  problems.  Furthermore,  science  stream  students perceived  that  their  teachers  were  academically  supportive  but  arts  stream students  perceived  that  their  teachers  were  focusing  on  controlling  their behavior.  On  the  other  hand,  findings  of  this  study  also  revealed  that  science stream  students  possed  higher  level  of  self-esteem than  arts  stream  students. Accordingly,  it  was  indicated  that  teachers’  perceived  behavior  and  teachers’ expectancy  are  correlated  to  one  another,  and  teachers’  perceived  behavior predicts students’ self-esteem. It was discovered that teachers expected science stream students to be eager to improve their academic performance, and students from arts stream class  were likely to be involved in disciplinary problems. Students  were found to  be  aware  of  their  teachers’  expectancy,  and  their  perception  of  teachers’ expectancy  affected  their  self-esteem.  While  self-esteem  was  referred  to  a discrepancy  between  a  student’s  ideal-self  and  actual-self,  it  was  discovered that  both  groups  of  students  pictured  their  ideal-self  differently  to  each  other. Science  stream  students  pictured  their  ideal-selves  as  a  character  with  overall success, while arts stream students pictured their ideal-selves as a socially well-functioned  character.  Nevertheless,  arts  stream  students  found  to  have  lower self-esteem.  It  was  concluded  that  streaming  affected  the  students’  self-esteem through teachers’ expectancy and perceived behavior.Keywords:   Streaming,  students’  self-esteem,  teachers’  expectancy,  science stream, arts stream, supportive, controlling.
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