Relationell kompetens i praktiken- och dess påverkan på elevers delaktighet

Translated title of the thesis: Relational competence in practice- and its impact on student participation
  • Monika Borgström
  • Johanna Sternberg

Student thesis: Professional degree, Advanced level


The aim of this qualitative study is to attempt to see differences and similarities in relationships - the importance is not to distinguish what teachers do, but how they do things. We would like to illuminate teachers’ relational competence - what happens in the relationship and interaction between teachers and their students as well as how it affects the students’ participation. We use the term relational competence the way Aspelin (2018) suggests - as a foundation for teachers’ professionalism when it comes to relationships and personal approach - how teachers build pedagogical relationships with their students. Aspelin’s (2018) aspects of relational competence, Linder’s (2016) themes for interplay and Lilja’s (2013) dimensions of trustful relationships have been important to our study which aims to contribute with a depiction of how the relationship can make a difference. This thesis investigates which characteristics of relational competence can be seen in the observed teachers and how it relates to student participation. It also investigates how the students express what determines participation and if they mention relational competence. Methods used to collect data has been notetaking on observations in seven lessons as well as longer interviews with two teachers and a Special Education teacher as well as shorter conversations with four teachers and two groups of students. All empirical evidence has been collected with a class in year nine, and their different teachers. The data has been analyzed with qualitative content analysis and discussed with regards to previous research, literature, theory and terminology. The evidence show how different teachers use their relational competence variously and the way in which the students’ participation responds to it. Three of six teachers showed more signs of relational competence than the others and it is in those teachers’ lessons that the most student participation could be seen. The impact teachers’ relational competence has on the students’ participation is unmistakable. For Learning Support Coordinators this affect the way we work with coaching conversations and guide teachers in their work.

Date of Award2019-Jul-11
Original languageSwedish
SupervisorKatarina Nilfyr (Supervisor) & Ann-Elise Persson (Examiner)

Educational program

  • Special Education Programme

University credits

  • 15 HE credits

Swedish Standard Keywords

  • Pedagogical Work (50304)


  • relational competence
  • relational pedagogy
  • relational perspective
  • teacher-student relationship

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