Komarraju, M., Musulkin, S., & Bhattacharya, G. (2010). Role of student–faculty interactions in developing college students’ academic self-concept, motivation, and achievement. Journal of college student development, 51(3), 332-342.

Student–faculty interactions can be crucial in developing students’ academic self-concept and enhancing their motivation and achievement. Colleges and universities that actively foster close and frequent contact between their students and faculty members are more likely to reap a host of benefits from such initiatives. Faculty members taking an interest in their students’ academic progress could potentially make significant contributions in increasing their intellectual and professional development (Anaya & Cole, 2001; Chickering, 1969; Chickering & Reisser, 1993; Cokley, 2000; Terenzini & Pascarella, 1980). There is evidence that students successful in knowing even one faculty member closely are likely to feel more satisfied with their college life and aspire to go further in their careers (Rosenthal et al., 2000). Although most interactions with faculty tend to occur within the formal classroom setting, students who experience informal interactions tend to be more motivated, engaged, and actively involved in the learning process (Thompson, 2001; Woodside, Wong, & Weist, 1999). Informal interaction between students and faculty has been identified as a primary agent of college culture, and has an important influence on the attitudes, interests, and values of college students (Chickering & Reisser, 1993; Lambert, Terinzini, & Lattuca, 2007; Pascarella, 1980b; Pascarella & Terenzini, 1991, 2005; Thompson, 2001). However, although previous research has established that student–faculty interactions are important, we still need to identify which aspects of student–faculty interactions are helpful and how these could significantly influence students to stay in college, increase their desire to work hard, stimulate them to enjoy learning, and encourage them to strive toward high achievement standards (Bean, 1985). The current study addresses this gap in the literature by examining eight specific types of student–faculty interactions as predictors of academic self-concept and three types of academic motivation, as well as academic achievement in a sample of college students from a medium-sized, public university located in the Midwestern United States.

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