Relationship influences on students' academic achievement, psychological health and well-being at school

Rosalind Murray-Harvey

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    40 Citations (Scopus)


    A generally accepted indicator of the quality of a student’s experience of school is academic performance but other indicators that include psychological health and social/emotional adjustment have also been shown to have an impact. For this study, data were collected from both students and teachers about students’ social/emotional adjustment and academic achievement and motivation. Data were obtained for 888 students across Years 5 to 9 from 58 classes in 21 South Australia schools. Students reported through a questionnaire on the extent to which they perceived relationships with family, peers and teachers as sources of stress or support at school; their psychological health; feelings about and sense of belonging to school; and their academic performance. Teachers reported on randomly selected students in each of their classes regarding their Academic Achievement and Motivation, and their Social/Emotional Adjustment to school. The significant associations revealed from correlation analysis between the Relationship, Psychological Health, and Social Adjustment variables, and Academic Performance were further investigated using path analysis. This analysis confirmed the strength of the connection between the student’s social/emotional and academic experience of school, and highlighted that both academic and social/emotional outcomes are unambiguously influenced by the quality of the relationships between teachers and students which, when compared with that of family and peers, exert the strongest influence, on well-being and achievement outcomes for students.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)104-115
    Number of pages12
    JournalEducational and Child Psychology
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - 2010


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