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Editorial: The Role of Teachers in Students’ Social Inclusion in the Classroom

Gasser, Luciano; Cillessen, Antonius; Huber, Christian; Mainhard, Tim; Müller, Christoph; Zurbriggen, Carmen (2022). Editorial: The Role of Teachers in Students’ Social Inclusion in the Classroom. Frontiers in Education, 2022 (7), pp. 1-3. 10.3389/feduc.2022.830973

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Students’ social inclusion has serious implications for their social, emotional and academic adjustment (Ladd and Troop-Gordon, 2003; Sette et al., 2020). The current Research Topic conceptualizes social inclusion from a contextual perspective and not merely as the result of students’ individual social competences. From this perspective, teachers represent an important element in the classroom social ecology significantly contributing to peer group dynamics and thereby also to individual students’ social inclusion (Farmer et al., 2011; Juvonen et al., 2019). Based on attachment theory, some researchers have argued that teacher behaviors expressing warmth, sensitivity and responsiveness contribute to students’ safe exploration of their peer worlds (Sabol and Pianta, 2012; Verschueren and Koomen, 2012; Roorda et al., 2021). Other researchers have highlighted the importance of teachers’ feedback toward individual students because they act as social referrers that communicate evaluative information about the likability of individual students (Hendrickx et al., 2017; Huber et al., 2018). However, despite an increasing interest in the role of teachers in peer relationships, we still know relatively little about the multiple avenues along which teachers affect their students’ social inclusion.
The current Research Topic substantially contributes to this research gap. It includes fourteen articles that focus on different aspects of children’s social inclusion in the classroom (e.g., social acceptance, friendships, victimization, marginalization). These articles cover a broad spectrum of teacher practices (e.g., grouping strategies, behavior management) at different levels of the classroom (the group vs. dyadic relations). Several of the included studies applied a longitudinal design (e.g., Chen et al.; Kim et al.), included relatively large samples (e.g., Furrer et al.; Klang et al.), and used observational methods to assess teacher behaviors (e.g., Garrote et al.; Hendrickx et al.). Moreover, the Research Topic also includes studies that highlight students’ and teachers’ social-cognitive processing of teachers’ influence on social inclusion (e.g., Demol et al.; Mulvey et al.). Finally, some of the studies addressed teacher professional development and interventions to improve students’ social inclusion (Farmer et al.). This summary classifies the articles into the following four groups.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

PHBern Contributor:

Gasser, Luciano, Zurbriggen, Carmen


[999 0007 99] SPP Schul- und Ausbildungserfolg ohne Projekt




Jessica Brunner

Date Deposited:

13 Feb 2023 14:59

Last Modified:

27 Apr 2023 14:59

Publisher DOI:





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