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ERIC Number: EJ998988
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 36
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-1467-9620
Attitudes and Affect: Daily Emotions and Their Association with the Commitment and Burnout of Beginning Teachers
Jones, Nathan; Youngs, Peter
Teachers College Record, v114 n2 2012
Background/Context: The increasing number of districts implementing mentoring and induction programs suggests that policymakers are aware of the need to increase the support available to new teachers. The argument underlying many of these programs is based, at least partly, on assumptions about beginning teachers' emotional responses to their work. Yet while considerable research has studied the effects of induction programs, few researchers have rigorously collected data on how beginning teachers' affective experiences seem to impact their career plans. Purpose of the Study: We tested a framework developed in the organizational behavior literature known as affective events theory (AET), which proposes that emotional responses to work, coupled with abstract beliefs about one's job, can influence overall judgments about job satisfaction. Specifically, we drew on research from education and organizational behavior to test whether mean levels of positive affect, negative affect, skill, and fatigue are associated with intentions to remain in teaching (i.e., commitment to one's teaching assignment), commitment to one's school, and levels of burnout. Research Design: Sources of data in this study include survey data collected at two time points (fall 2007 and spring 2008) from 42 beginning general and special education teachers in three districts in Michigan and Indiana, as well as data collected using the experience sampling method (ESM), a time sampling method for gaining information about individuals' immediate experiences. The inclusion of both data sources allowed us to capitalize on the richness of the ESM data--which accounts for variation in teachers' momentary affective states--while also supporting the data with more traditional survey measures. Conclusions/Recommendations: We found that mean levels of positive affect and skill are positively associated with commitment, even when controlling for prior commitment. Similarly, negative affect and tiredness seem to be predictive of teacher burnout. These results suggest that, by taking account of teachers' emotional reactions to their work (in addition to features of their work environments), researchers, policymakers, and district administrators will be better positioned to support special and general educators during their early years of teaching.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Indiana; Michigan