Date of Graduation

Spring 2024


Master of Science in Psychology



Committee Chair

Adena Young


Student retention and success rates are an increasing concern among collegiate administrators and educators. This study examined the influence of a college instructor’s email communications on professor-student rapport, student academic self-efficacy, resilience, motivation, and success. Researchers hypothesized that the student participants who received the encouraging email communications from their professor would demonstrate higher levels of professor-student rapport, higher levels of academic self-efficacy, resiliency, and success compared to the students who receive standard email communications from their professor. Five scales were utilized in this study including Professor-Student Rapport Scale, Academic Self-Efficacy Scale, Academic Resilience Scale (ARS-30), Daily Spiritual Experience Scale (DSES), and Patterns of Adaptive Learning Scale-Achievement Goal Subscales (PALS, Revised 2000). Participants (N = 66) completed the scales twice, once at the beginning of the semester and once at the end in order to evaluate the effects of email communications from the professor on participants’ thoughts and feelings concerning professor-student rapport, academic self-efficacy, resilience, and motivation. Researchers found a positive increase in professor-student rapport from the beginning to the conclusion of the semester (Pre-Post ANOVA), supporting the hypothesis. Additionally, a significant decrease in academic self-efficacy and resiliency was evident from the beginning to the end of the semester. When evaluating group differences (Control vs Experimental), no significant differences were observed. Based upon a multiple regression analysis, it was found that professor-student rapport was the only factor that contributed significantly to changes in academic self-efficacy. However, the direction of this relationship did not support the predicted hypothesis. This study exemplifies the strengths that email communications demonstrate on professor-student rapport and indicates that it should be implemented by educators.


professor-student rapport, academic self-efficacy, resilience, motivation, spirituality

Subject Categories

Quantitative Psychology | Social Psychology


© David J. Heim

Open Access