THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN COPING STRATEGIES, LOCUS OF CONTROL, AND THE EXPERIENCE OF BURNOUT AMONG TEACHERS (STRESS)

ANN M SPECTOR, Fordham University

Abstract

This study investigated the relationship between four types of coping strategies, locus of control, and burnout among 128 female teachers employed in metropolitan elementary schools. Burnout was measured by frequency ratings on three subscales of the Maslach Burnout Inventory (MBI): Emotional Exhaustion, Depersonalization, and Personal Accomplishment. Coping strategies were assessed by ratings on a scale developed for this study which was factor analyzed, yielding four distinct dimensions: direct/active, direct/inactive, indirect/active, and indirect/inactive coping strategies. Locus of Control for specific school situations and educational beliefs was measured by an expanded version of the Locus of Control Scale for Teachers.^ It was predicted that coping strategy preferences and locus of control would be related to frequency ratings of Emotional Exhaustion, Depersonalization, and Personal Accomplishment. Three stepwise multiple regression analyses were performed to test the hypotheses. The results provided partial support for the hypotheses. Indirect/inactive coping strategies and locus of control were significantly related to the frequency of Emotional Exhaustion, together accounting for 52% of the variance in this dimension. Indirect/inactive coping strategies were the most powerful predictor, alone accounting for 46% of the variance. Indirect/inactive coping strategies and locus of control were also significantly related to the frequency of Depersonalization, together accounting for 21% of the variance in this measure. Locus of control, direct/active, indirect/inactive, and indirect/active coping strategies were significantly related to the frequency of Personal Accomplishment, together accounting for 40% of the variance in this dimension.^ These findings indicated that the increased use of indirect/inactive coping strategies and a more external locus of control are related to increased frequency of burnout as measured by the Emotional Exhaustion and Depersonalization subscales of the MBI. Additionally, they indicated that a more internal locus of control, an increased use of direct/active and indirect/active coping strategies, and a decreased use of indirect/inactive coping strategies are related to decreased frequency of burnout as measured by the Personal Accomplishment subscale. These findings were discussed in terms of ways in which school psychologists can provide intervention for the problem of burnout. ^

Subject Area

Clinical psychology

Recommended Citation

SPECTOR, ANN M, "THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN COPING STRATEGIES, LOCUS OF CONTROL, AND THE EXPERIENCE OF BURNOUT AMONG TEACHERS (STRESS)" (1984). ETD Collection for Fordham University. AAI8423136.
https://fordham.bepress.com/dissertations/AAI8423136

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