Teaching Behavioral Practices: Relations to Student Risk Behaviors, Learning Barriers, and School Climate

Document Type

Peer-Reviewed Article

Publication Date



Student behavioral problems pose a myriad of challenges for schools. In this study, we examine the relations among teacher and school-level constructs (i.e., teacher collaboration, supervision/discipline, instructional management), and student-related outcomes (i.e., high-risk behaviors, barriers to learning, student social–behavioral climate). Teachers across 29 high schools, in a large urban school district serving primarily low-income students, completed self-report surveys. Multilevel regression was used to test both individual- and school-level predictors of student outcomes. Findings suggest that teacher practices at the individual and school levels are linked to student high-risk behaviors, barriers to student learning, and school climate. More specifically, findings indicate that better supervision/discipline and instructional management are associated with fewer high-risk behaviors and barriers to learning. More instructional management is also linked to positive social–behavioral climate. Results from this study highlight the association between teacher practices and a range of student-related problem behaviors, and suggest that system-level interventions in the school may have positive effects.


Published online first 19 July 2016.