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Rhetorical Analysis of Teachers Views of Issues Involving Students Mental Health

Samantha Gonzalez

RWS 1301

October 5th, 2017


Rhetorical analysis of teachers views of issues involving students mental health


It is not surprising that many students are in need of some kind of mental help. Whether

that be due to depression and anxiety or a kind of eating disorder. Many are affected by it or

know someone that is. For example in Teachers views of issues involving students mental

health, a teachers job is to teach and have a student grow as person, but many teachers do feel

like they are simply unable to help due to their position. A teacher is often in a predicament

because though they may see that their student needs some kind of help, such as counseling, they

are usually not able to help or direct the student to someone who can. Analyzing the article

Teachers views of issues involving students mental health by using ethos, pathos, logos, it

can be proven how crucial a teachers involvement and aid can be.

The authors claims that many students need some kind of mental help but teachers feel

like they are inadequate to help. The study that was done by Robert W. Roeser and Carol

Midgley from the University of Michigan was created to firstly, understand the teachers views

on their involvement in their students health. Secondly, to see if the teacher felt burdened by

their student needing help with their mental health and finally to view the teachers sensitivity

and their level of understanding towards said student that may need aid.


The authors uses ethos in the article early on as they establish their credentials,

experience and reasoning behind doing the study. The authors, Robert W. Roeser and Carol

Midgley from the University of Michigan did this research to get the insight of the teachers

views on their student needing help with their mental health and to prove that a large amount of

children in the United States suffer from a multitude of things such a emotional and social

behavior. This study was then published into The Elementary Scholarly Journal which is in a

volume. This is just further showing the credibility to the article due to its level of publishing.

The authors was more subtle in their writing in regards to the usage of pathos.

Throughout the article one can not help but feel a sight sympathetic response when the authors

retell some of the events. For example, when the authors are going over their study experience

involving the teacher, the feeling of slight anger or annoyance is happening ( Teachers views

of issues involving students mental health Pg 3). This is due to the teachers then explaining

that they are feeling like it is not their place to help a student in such a serious way. Then

revealing the sense of burden that gets placed upon the teacher in this moment. The teachers

sense of inadequacy in this regard is however, understandable, it is not their job to necessarily

worry about their students mental state. In the article however, it was reported that many of the

teachers want to help but simply are not in the position to, so they will at times, try to have the

student receive the help they need. This article is more academic based rather than simply trying

to invoke some kind of emotional response, rather trying to be more logos based in its writing

than pathos.

With that being said, it is a research study based article, meaning that it relies more on

logos rather than simply trying to cause the reader to feel an emotion, pathos. Throughout the

article the authors are retelling their experience with the study, referring to the conclusions that

they arose to with the students and teachers they involved. For example, they had initially

interviewed the teacher to see if the teacher had known or suspected that some of their students

were in need of help for the mental health. After this was recorded, the authors then did the same

with the students to see if the students would be able to see of they believed they themselves or

their own classmate needed it. It was then back to the teacher to see how they felt in regards to

the student needing help, many of the teachers had responded that they felt burdened with this.

In the sense that they were unable to properly give the help the student needed, leaving the

teacher to feel inadequate.

The author has written this article with a set audience in mind, the study was done with

intention of informing others, such as teachers, students and other school professionals that the

importance to a students mental health is vital to their schooling. With the audience in mind, it

was written to help others have a better understanding of students and their mental health, and

how teachers notice and even acknowledge that their student needs mental help but are left

feeling stuck due to their position. This article has the intention to inform other and to prove how

important the students mental health is in a classroom setting, and that many schools need to

focus on having a better system. Meaning that the school should provide or improve their

counseling so that way the students will be able to use the vital resources and give them the

chance to better themselves now and further along the road.


Educational issues can deal with a variety of things but a very crucial one that affects

nearly every student is mental health. The mental state of a student plays heavily into their

education. Those that suffer from a disorder, such as one involved with eating or depression and

anxiety, often find their grades suffering. Mental health can really take it's toll on a person where

getting up in the morning is a too difficult task itself. By analyzing this article, it is easy to say

that the students mental health is a crucial point in their school life with the support of the

authors usage of the rhetorical elements, ethos, pathos, and logos.



Roeser, Robert W., and Carol Midgley. "Teachers Views of Issues Involving Students

Mental Health." The Elementary School Journal 98, no. 2 (1997): 115-33. doi:10.1086/461887.