An exploration of strategies used by Malaysian secondary school teachers to promote positive behaviour
: professionals’ and pupils’ perspectives

  • Mohd Awang

    Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisDoctor of Philosophy


    This research explores the concept of positive and negative behaviour in a Malaysian context and strategies used by secondary school teachers to promote positive behaviour. It also examines strategies that are perceived to be effective and possible factors that have influenced professionals’ attitudes towards positive behaviour. Mixed-method research design was used to complete three different stages. Stage 1 analysed 91 government circulars using content analysis; Stage 2 involved administering a survey to a total of 319 professionals including principals, counsellors and teachers and 494 pupils aged 16 years from 15 selected national secondary schools; Stage 3 focused on two case studies in two selected schools where classroom observations, individual interviews with professionals, and focus groups with pupils were the focal point. Statistical analysis included descriptive and inferential analysis (a chi squared test), while narrative data was analysed by using a thematic approach. Observational data was analysed manually by focusing on the frequency of target behaviour. This study proposes a Socio-ecological Model suggesting that interaction within and between ecological layers constructs the concept of positive and negative behaviour. This study also suggests that bonding and bridging social capital would improve pupil behaviour and develop school community. Findings also suggest that socio-cultural factors and professional experience have influenced professionals’ attitudes towards positive behaviour enhancement strategies. Implications for policy making, practitioners, and future research are also discussed. The research also offers recommendations which could inform policy formulation and further longitudinal research activity.
    Date of Award2012
    Original languageEnglish
    SponsorsMinistry of Higher Education, Malaysia & Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia
    SupervisorDivya Jindal-Snape (Supervisor) & Terry Barber (Supervisor)


    • Bonding and bridging
    • Behaviour
    • Ecological system theory
    • Social capital
    • Religious capital
    • Circulars
    • Corporal punishment
    • Classroom management
    • School ethos
    • Positive behaviour enhancement strategies

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