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Copy of Burnout amongst music educators: A literature review

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Ryan Gillespie

on 6 January 2013

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Transcript of Copy of Burnout amongst music educators: A literature review

Burnout amongst music educators:
A literature review
Iain Novoselich
University of Michigan Definition of Burnout "Burnout is often described as a syndrome that (a) occurs at an individual level, (b) is an internal psychological experience involving feelings, attitudes, motives, and expectations, (c) is a negative individual experience that involves distress, discomfort, dysfunction, and negative consequences, and (d) is associated with emotional and physical exhaustion, depersonalization, and reduced personal accomplishment" (Hamann, 1990). Factors contributing to burnout are... Categories Studies Factors of attrition amongst
high school band directors
Nimmo, D. J. (1986) A survey of burnout among university music faculty
Bernhard, H. C., II. (2007) Overstimulation
Type A Personalities
Role stress Burnout can lead to High turnover
Low morale
High absenteeism
Reduced productivity
Reduced creativity
Increased agitation
Communication problems
Family issues “Individuals most frequently affected by burnout are those who are the most productive, dedicated, and committed in their fields; they are usually highly motivated and idealistic" (Hamann, 1990) Students "The student's right to engaging educational
experiences will be hindered when a teacher
experiences burnout" (Sterns & Cox, 1993) What's your role? Burnout can also stem from disagreement amongst a teacher’s perceived role as an educator, influence of a professional organization, role as an educator/parent, and the role that can actually exist with the constraints of the teacher’s life. Teachers that lack a defined role as an educator can inadvertently find themselves being bogged down in their teaching as they attempt to take on too many responsibilities (Scheib, 2003) Symptoms "Physical symptoms of burnout range from serious disorders such as: peptic ulcers, high blood pressure, rheumatoid arthritis, thyroid disease, rise in cholesterol level, chronic back pain, and migraine headaches, to less serious disorders as minor weight-loss or gain, inability to get rid of colds, and fatigue"
(Hamann, Daugherty, & Mills, 1987) The psychological symptoms of burnout can also bring about “detachment, boredom, cynicism, a sense of impotence, paranoia, disorientation, psychosomatic complaints, depression, denial of feelings, frustration, irritability, impatience, and worry” (Hamann, Daugherty, and Mills, 1987) “Since teaching is considered a giving profession, one in which teachers give of themselves daily and receive little external rewards in return, it is considered a potentially high risk group for burnout” (Hamann, Daugherty, & Mills, 1987) Purpose statement The purpose of this presentation is to review the literature on burnout, explore the ways in which burnout for the music teacher develops, and how it is framed from different perspectives. Perspectives from outside the public school
Perspectives from within the public school
Effects leading to burnout over time
Individual reflections on burnout Perspectives from outside the public school To determine any evolutionary changes when compared to previous research
172 former high school band directors from across the U.S.
MBI Survey
“It looks as if one chooses to assume the posture of “being all things to all people,” he or she risks the danger of premature attrition” (Nimmo, 1986) To compare perceived burnout levels (emotional exhaustion, depersonalization, and reduced personal accomplishment) of university music faculty by tenure status (tenured, tenure-track, or non-tenure-track) and primary teaching area
41 University faculty
Overall, there was not a significant difference in burnout based upon tenure status, although faculty teaching academic or a combination of academic and performances classes exhibited the highest levels of emotional exhaustion and depersonalization (Bernhard, 2007) :O/// Studies Perspectives from within the public school Summary Surveys outside of the public school system
Use of the MBI and MBI ES
Directors leave for a variety of reasons primarily citing:
lack of support from administration
not spending enough time with family
opportunity for a better job
do something different
general philosophical disagreement of the role of band
College faculty experience burnout out primarily through:
teaching academic classes
teaching performance and academic classes
positive correlation between hours spent planning for class and symptoms of burnout Introduction The largest body of burnout research centers on the research of active music teachers in the public schools. From this point forward in the presentation, studies will be based upon current, in-service teachers working in the public schools. This first section of research is the broadest, most encompassing category of this review. Subsequent categories will attempt to divide this category further into “effects leading to burnout over time” and “individual reflections on burnout.” Teacher burnout, the cost of caring
Hamann, D.; Daugherty, E. (1984) To assess potential burnout symptoms amongst music instructors
21 teachers attending classes at U. of N. Colorado
lack of administrative support
unclear goals
lack of recognition
lack of cooperation among music teachers district wide
too much work for not enough salary or time to do it
“Individuals who are single or divorced or who have been in a profession from approximately one to six years are more likely to experience burnout symptoms than individuals that are married or have taught longer than six years” (Maslach, as cited in Hamann & Daugherty, 1984) Resultant study of 1984 study
To assess burnout among public school educators
101 randomized public school teachers
The results of this study reflect results from Hamann and Daugherty’s 1984 study. The authors conclude that burnout is indeed an issue of high importance that needs to be discussed. They also note that the most “dedicated and effective” teachers are the most susceptible to burnout, and without further research, schools run the risk of losing great teachers to this malady. An investigation of burnout assessment and potential job related variables among public school music educators
Hamann, D. L., Daugherty, E., & Mills, C. R. (1987) To identify sources of band directors’ job satisfaction, job stress, and perceived areas of concern
120 band directors from midwestern state
Student success was the “most important source of satisfaction among these respondents” (Heston et al., 1996)
Highest sources of job stress centered on student attitudes, behaviors, and teaching load
Students are both teachers' biggest joy and biggest stressor Job satisfaction and stress among band directors
Heston, M. L., Dedrick, C., Raschke, D., & Whitehead, J. (1996) To add to the growing body of knowledge based upon the work by Hamann in regard to utilizing the MBI-ES
514 non-randomized K-12 music teachers from 42 states
All respondents suffered moderate burnout in all subscales with emphasis on environmental factors
A correlation between increasing emotional exhaustion subscale levels was observed as participants listed more negative environmental factors
“An increase in preparation time corresponded to an increase in moderate emotional exhaustion”
This trend is similar to Bernhard’s findings with university music faculty cited earlier in this review Environmental support and music teacher burnout
McLain, B. P. (2005) These studies share many commonalities for studying the burnout phenomenon. Three out of four studies use the MBI or derivations of the MBI (ES) in addition to using some sort of researcher designed demographic form. Beyond individual reasons for burnout, it is interesting to note the correlation between negative environmental factors and elevated levels of emotional exhaustion—a possible indicator of the stress brought on in a time of budget cuts, No Child Left Behind, Race to the top, merit pay, etc. Studies Effects leading to burnout over time To explore retention and attrition issues
Alumni questionnaire
137 alumni
1995 questionnaire/2001 questionnaire
The largest trend demonstrated that many music teachers are leaving the profession early in their careers
Some music educators return to music education later in their lives
Concerns from participants included professional concerns involving support from students, parents, and administration, as well as personal concerns ranging from time management, family, and shifts in career interests Support for music education: A case study of issues concerning teacher retention and attrition
Madsen, C. K., & Hancock, C. B. (2002) To determine the change in stress (if any) over a seven-year period, determine differences of stress between men and women, as well as determining differences in stress in urban and nonurban environments
102 teachers in 1996; 62 matched teachers in 2003
TCI survey; 1996 survey/2003 survey
“Over the course of a seven-year interval, several significant decreases in stress occurred—particularly in the categories of Time Management, Work-Related Stressors, Professional Distress (.05 level), and Discipline and Motivation (.01 level)”
“It might be suggested that the teachers are able to dispel their stress more effectively; another argument may be that they do not recognize the manifestations [of stress]”
Noting the results of this survey, this is the only study in this presentation which uses the TCI A study of stress and its manifestations among music educators
Hedden, D. G. (2005) Studies Individual reflections on burnout To “review daily journal entries of experienced teachers to document factors promoting job satisfaction and disappointment in K-12 music education environments”
34 music teachers
Qualitative--journal entries
Overall, teachers reported the best days being when their own perceived teaching skills improved and reported the worst days when something beyond the classroom influenced them
“Positive student music learning” was the most positive reported result (52%) while negative comments including “student behavior” and “job responsibilities” were reported 36% and 30% of the time respectively (back to Heston) "Prepared yet flexible": Insights from daily logs of music teachers
Pembrook, R. G., & Fredrickson, W. E. (2000) To examine the stressors and tensions that contribute to burnout in the various “role demands of the school music teacher”
Role conflict, role ambiguity, role overload, underutilization of skills, resource inadequacy and nonparticipation
4 secondary music teachers
Qualitative--interviews, observations, thick description
“More often than being involved in the act of teaching, the subjects were found engaged in activities that suggest most of their work life is spent fulfilling other roles”
“Similarities and connections between the stress associated with too many responsibilities and stress caused from responsibilities that are unwanted or tedious” …can lead to teacher burnout Roles, expectations, and tension in the professional life of the school music teacher: A collective case study (Doctoral dissertation)
Scheib, J. W. (2002) Suggestions for teaching practice They don't say anything, it's just the way they treat you. The things they would say about the teachers. "Ah those teachers, they've got it so easy. They only work from 4 to 8 for crying out loud. They've got their summers off." It's that perceived attitude.
Don (9/24/01) from Scheib 2002 Yeah, free periods, prep periods? What's that? We end up using ours to just stomp out fires.
Pete (9/6/01) from Scheib 2002 In reality, if I decided not to do something, they're not going to know any difference. Because as soon as a group leaves that I haven't done it for, and I don't do it for the next group, they don't know. I mean the administration is clueless. They're just...as long as nobody's complaining, they're happy. If nobody's complaining, they just leave you alone. "Leave music alone, they know what they're doing."
Don (9/24/01) from Scheib 2002 And then you'll see these same people, you know, we hear that a lot. [They say] "Well geez, they're practicing all the time and this and that." And I'll say, "What's wrong with that. You don't seem to baulk at the fact that he spends two and half hours on the basketball court every day." That's not an inordinate amount of time, but he practiced his horn two and a half hours a day he's spending too much time on it. Why It's a cultural thing.
Pete (12/7/01) from Scheib 2002 The commitment to the field of teaching is not the same So then you combine that with...I see a lot of younger people leaving. They're doing it for a year or two, not the average of seven like it use to be, to really give it a try. They they're getting out. Because they look around and their friends are working less hours, have a lot less grief in their life, and they're making a lot more money. Andy they're doing things that these kids want to do. And I can't blame them. You know, I think of my debt. What does a house cost these days? I can't keep doing this. So they're taking their skills and they're shopping them around. I can think on this staff we lost three or four REALLY good teachers. They really would have been great teachers in five years.
Pete (9/17/01) from Scheib 2002 As evidenced from the literature above, burnout amongst music educators is a growing problem in today’s world. The possibility does exist that until recently, teachers neglected to discuss or chose not to divulge information about the stress of their jobs, but it my hypothesis that the demands placed on the teachers of today far outweigh those of years past. This additional load coupled with what the “job” has historically demanded is slowly creating a job that has the potential to be bigger than any one person—especially at the secondary level. Political rhetoric that has surfaced in the last decade has added a new dimension to the teaching profession. With demands for higher standards and more rigor while simultaneously debasing teachers and cutting budgets, the profession appears to be more challenging than ever. From the literature presented, it is apparent that teachers must approach commitments with caution, but must also be aware of how their lives are balanced. Due to role stressors such as professional membership organizations (MENC, MSBOA, MSVMA, etc.) there is a certain pressure placed upon teachers to constantly push the boundaries due to other successful teachers in their field. Today’s teacher must remain fully aware of their own school context and personal situation. Without keeping a more global perspective of themselves, today’s teachers risk extremely high levels of burnout. Remember that students, in addition to sometimes being the worst part of a teacher’s day, are also the best part of a teacher’s day as evidenced in several studies discussed here. The path is not always an easy one, but may you persevere in interesting times. The available research does an outstanding job of relating burnout to the teacher. What about relating the role of teacher burnout to the role of student? To my knowledge, there has not been an attempt to surmount this topic (at least in music education). It may be in the best interest of the music education community and the teaching profession as a whole to attempt to bridge the gap between the members of this symbiotic relationship. Who are teachers without students and who are students without teachers? Thank you .
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