The remaining variables -- those
termed professional, work, or job variables -- were hypothesized to be
at least somewhat related to the strength of stress. These variables
include student number and grade level. Additionally, the magnitude of
these relationships would be in the low to low-moderate range, if
significant at all. With respect to student number, it was hypothesized
that the number of students taught would be somewhat related to stress
levels (Fimian, 1983). Earlier investigations indicated a very low
positive correlation between teacher stress and student number; the more
students taught, the more stress was experienced and reported. Using
Pearson r analyses to correlate the number of students taught (total
teacher n = 2,731) with Total Stress Scores, a coefficient of .13 (p =
.00 1) resulted. These data indicate that there is a small yet
significant relationship between reported student number and teacher
stress, with teachers who have larger class sizes and caseloads
reporting more stress than teachers working with fewer students; as in
the case of the prior variables, and due to the small magnitude of the
index and the large sample size, this relationship may be due more to
the sensitivity of the analyses than to actual relationships between
caseload size and teacher stress. Apparently the size of teaching
caseloads is somewhat related to teacher stress, though it is so to only
a limited degree.
When discussing grade level,
it has often been noticed how simple a matter it is working with younger
students; teachers teaching older students were often thought to
experience more stress caused by the inherent difficulties of their jobs
(noted in Greenberg, 1984). However, it was earlier hypothesized and
confirmed that grade level taught would bear little relationship to
stress levels (Fimian, 1983). Using Pearson r analyses to correlate the
grade level taught (total teacher n = 2,712) with Total Stress Scores, a
coefficient of .02 resulted, indicating the absence of a relationship
between the grade level at which one teaches and the stress experienced
while teaching. Apparently, teaching younger students in the lower
grades can result in just as much stress as teaching in the later
grades. |