Gernot AichMichael BehrChristina Kuboth

The Gmuend Model for teacher-parent conferences

Application and evaluation of a teacher communication training


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Teachers require strong communication skills for their everyday work, especially when communicating with parents while trying to establish a relationship between families and schools. A number of scholars acknowledge and support this requirement and outline benefits students may derive from a good parent-school relationship. To address this topic, a four day communication training for educational scholars was designed and evaluated. It aims to enhance basic client-centered counseling skills including empathic responses, congruent communication and unconditional positive regard. A training group of 26 teacher students received 35 hours of training and blind raters scored their communication skills. The study, designed as a within-subject-design study, was replicated with three later groups, achieving a Pn of 93. In the third replication an additional follow up measurement was added which suggested that the training effect is stable. The pre/post training measures suggest high effect sizes on all three variables while a theoretical instruction only yielded a baseline without significant differences between pre-post measures. The study has sufficient reliability. Internal validity is limited, as a control group is missing, and external validity is limited, as only students participated and only theory-based variables were used.

School; Client-centered; Teacher-parent conferences; Communication; Training