Occupational stress: a study of stress levels as perceived by selected employees related to situational and dispositional stress
Jones, Kenneth D.
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Evidence from studies related to the workplace (Ziemenski, 1981 and Knautz, 1982) suggest that occupational stress is a causal factor in job-related illnesses such as coronary heart disease, psychoneurotic and personality disorders, and migraine headaches. II In addition to physiological problems resulting from stress almost every psychosocial variable of importance is affected by stress in the workplace, including productivity, morale, and the .psychological well-being of workers" (Ivancevich and Matteson, 1980). Cooper and Marshall (1975) proposed two central features of stress at work, the interaction of which determines either coping or maladaptive behavior and stress related disease: (1) the characteristics of the persons (dispositional) and (2) the potential sources of stress in the work environment (situational). There is a growing need to use stress responses to cope with stressful situations encountered in occupations. In order to fulfill their responsibilities, employees should be aware of stressors that develop. The methods utilized in this study should provide an approach to identifying stressors and assessing counterproductive job situations. The purpose of this study was to measure and compare the degrees of stress experienced by administrators, teachers I and support personnel of the District of Columbia Public School System to selected occupational factors. This study utilized a descriptive research methodology and survey technique to gather data from a sample population of employees of the District of Columbia Public School System including: (a) administrators, (b) teachers, (c) support personnel f including engineers and clerical support personnel. It was hypothesized that: (1) there is no statistically significant difference in stress levels of administrators, teachers, and support personnel as measured by responses to measurements of perceived occupational stressors (change, clarity, tedium, control, intensity and conflict) according to reported situational and dispositional factors. Analysis of Variance procedures and Pearson Moment Correlation were used to test the hypothesis. Data for the study were obtained from five high schools in the District of Columbia.
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