Increasing Teachers’ Praise for Their Students Increases Students’ Enjoyment of School and Teachers’ Work Engagement

Yuya Iijima, Tatsuto Yamada, Taisuke Katsuragawa*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The present study examined the processes and effects of teachers' praise on their students' enjoyment of school and teachers' engagement in their work. The research was done with 4 teachers (2 men, 2 women) at 1 junior high school. The duration of baseline differed across teachers. The intervention at the end of the baseline period consisted of a lecture given to the teachers regarding the nature of praise and how to deliver praise to their students, plus training in self-recording. After that, the teachers recorded the praise that they gave to their students during 1 class period daily for 4 weeks. The teachers completed questionnaires once a week from the beginning of the baseline period to the end of the intervention. In addition, each teacher participated in a 30-minute semi-structured interview. Their students (N=267: 96 in 7th grade, 111 in 8th grade, and 60 in 9th grade) completed questionnaires at the beginning and end of the intervention period. The results suggested that the students' enjoyment of school increased in classes in which teachers' use of praise increased. Analysis of the data from the teachers suggested that their work engagement increased with an increase in their use of praise. Experiencing the effects of using praise was directly related to teachers' increased work engagement and to changes in the teachers' perception of their students. The teachers' praise for the students appeared to contribute to increased adjustment to school for both the students and the teachers. The discussion deals with the importance of interaction and correspondence between the teachers' praise and the students' experience of being praised.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)388-400
Number of pages13
JournalJapanese Journal of Educational Psychology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2020


  • enjoyment of school
  • mixed methods research
  • process research
  • teachers' praise
  • work engagement

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology


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