Emotional labor refers to the efforts workers engage in to manage the expression of their feelings in order to meet organizational goals or norms. Although education researchers have established emotional labor among classroom teachers, the nuances and effects of emotional labor in classroom settings still requires more study and understanding. In particular, as researchers have identified the connections between emotional labor and stress among educators, they have posited that providing instruction on the constructs of emotional labor may help to decrease those feelings of stress. Researchers have not yet studied this idea. The aim of this study was to fill that gap by creating and evaluating an in-service training program for educators that teaches about the constructs of emotional labor.
The study design incorporated both qualitative and quantitative measures to determine not only if teachers can increase their understanding of emotional labor constructs through in-service training, but also how they apply these new understandings in their daily practice. The participants included 22 K-5 classroom teachers from an elementary school in the Mid-Atlantic region of the United States. Over the course of 10 weeks, the teachers participated in five 30-minute long training sessions that were delivered via direct instruction, whole group discussion, and small group discussion. They completed a pre-test and post-test around the first direct instruction training session to determine if their understanding of emotional labor increased after the training. As the training program continued over the course of four more sessions, the participants completed journal entries, which were analyzed to determine how the teachers were recognizing and understanding emotional labor in their practice. The analysis of the journal entries and post-test results serve to extend the field of emotional labor research, because it established that this group of teachers increased their understanding of emotional labor and applied their new learning to their practice. The findings from this study may also be interpreted as a call to action for further research, because the participants requested additional training during which they could talk with colleagues about how to manage the stress they feel related to emotional labor.
|Advisor:||Kerr, Mary Margaret|
|Commitee:||Cribbs, Amanda, Kerr, Mary Margaret, Trovato, Charlene|
|School:||University of Pittsburgh|
|Department:||Administrative and Policy Studies|
|School Location:||United States -- Pennsylvania|
|Source:||DAI-A 80/05(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Educational leadership, Education, Teacher education|
|Keywords:||Burnout, Emotion management, Emotional regulation, In-service training, Professional development, Stress|
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