Inventory Development
 Personal Variables

 

The first set of variables -- termed personal variables -- was hypothesized to be related little, if at all, to the strength of stress. These variables include teacher sex, age, experience, and the level of their own professional development. With respect to teacher sex, it was originally hypothesized that teacher gender would not be significantly related to stress (Fimian, 1983).  Using Pearson r analyses to correlate cross-sex samples' (total n = 3,291) Total Stress Scores, a coefficient of .06 (p = .001) resulted. These data indicate that there is a very small yet significant relationship between teacher gender and teacher stress, with female teachers experiencing more stress than males; due to the small magnitude of the index and the extremely large sample size, however, this relationship is probably due more to the sensitivity of the analyses than to events actually occurring in the real world. In the light of this consideration, it is apparent that teacher gender bears little actual relationship to teacher stress levels.

When considering teacher age, and since teacher age has been found to be negatively correlated to only a limited degree with teacher burnout, the same relationship was predicted between age and teacher stress; it was originally hypothesized that teacher age would be only somewhat related to stress levels (Fimian, 1983). Earlier investigations demonstrated an extremely weak, yet consistent, negative correlation between teacher burnout and age; the older the teacher got, the less burnout was experienced and reported (Crane, 1981; Schwab, 1980). Using Pearson r analyses to correlate cross-age samples" (total n = 3,335) Total Stress Scores, a coefficient of -.09 (p = .001) resulted. These data indicate that there is a very small yet significant relationship between teacher age and teacher stress, with younger teachers experiencing more stress than do older teachers; as in the case of teacher sex, though, and due to the small magnitude of the coefficient and the extremely large sample size, this relationship may be due more to the sensitivity of the analysis than to events that occur to different-aged teachers. Thus, it is apparent that teacher age bears only a limited relationship to teacher stress levels.

With respect to teacher education levels, it was originally hypothesized that the teacher's education level would not be significantly related to stress (Fimian, 1983). Again using Pearson r analyses to correlate the teachers' education levels (e.g., bachelor's, master's, or advanced degrees; total n = 1,733) and their Total Stress Scores, a coefficient of .00 resulted indicating that teacher education level bears little relationship to teacher stress levels. Finally, and with respect to years' teaching experience, it was originally hypothesized that the number of years teachers have taught would not be significantly related to stress (Fimian, 1983). Using Pearson r analyses to correlate teaching experience in terms of years (total n = 2,247) with Total Stress Scores, a coefficient of .06 (p = .00 1) resulted. These data indicate that there is a very small yet significant relationship between teacher experience and teacher stress, with more experienced teachers reporting more stress than do less experienced teachers; due to the small magnitude of the index and the extremely large sample size, however, this relationship may be due more to the sensitivity of the analyses than to actual events. In light of this, it is apparent that the degree of teacher experience bears little relationship to teacher stress levels.