Elementary School Student Burnout Scale for Grades 6-8: A Study of Validity and Reliability

Article excerpt

Abstract

The purpose of this study is to develop an "Elementary School Student Burnout Scale for Grades 6-8". The study group included 691 students out of 10 schools in Eskisehir. Both Exploratory Factor Analysis and Confirmatory Factor Analysis were conducted on the data (Burnout stem from school activities, burnout stem from family, feeling of insufficiency in school, lack of interest towards school). A four factor solution was emerged with 26 items. These four factors explain 59 % of the total variance. Factor loadings ranged from .42-.81. Cronbach Alpha reliability coefficient for the sub-dimensions ranged from the lowest .76 to the highest .92. Split-half correlation coefficient for the sub-dimensions ranged from .65 to .81. The model indices emerged from the Confirmatory Factor Analysis [GFI=0.94, AGFI=0.91, PGFI=0.89, RMSEA=0.07, CFI=0.91; (x2=787.6, df=293, p<.01)] indicated that there was a good fit. To establish criterion validity of the scale, "Academic Expectations Stress Inventory" was used. The correlation coefficients between the two scales as well as among the sub-dimensions of the scales varied from the lowest .20 to the highest .38.

Key Words

Burnout, School Burnout, Student, Confirmatory Factor Analysis.

Freduenberger defines burnout as failure, attrition or exhaustion as a result of the excessive use of power, energy, and other individual sources (Maslach, Schaufeli, & Leiter, 2001; Seidman & Zager, 1991). Professions that require intensive and permanent contact with human beings are thought to be inclined to develop burnout syndrome and uner risk concerning burnout (Farber & Miller, 1981; Van Horn, Schaufeli, & Enzmann, 1999) studies focused on these professional areas (Dyrbye, 2008; Hiscott & Connop, 1989; Huebner, 1992; Kaçmaz, 2005; Malanowski & Wood, 1984). However, over time studies extended to cover all the professions (Pines & Guendelman 1995; Shirom, 1989). Health and educational burnout research based on three strands: Organization, profession/work and individual (Grayson & Alvarez, 2008). Teacher and other school personnel burnout have been widely studied (Akçamete, Kaner, & Sucuoglu 2001; Bakker & Schaufeli, 2000; Cemaloglu & Kayabasi, 2007; Farber & Miller, 1981; Friedman, 1999; Greenglass, Fiksenbaum, & Burke, 1994; Huebner, 1992; Ross, Altmaier, & Russell, 1989; Russell, Altmaier, & Van Velzen, 1987; Sandoval, 1993; Sucuoglu & Kuloglu 1996; Tatar & Horenczyk, 2003). That the main reason for that is burnout was defined as psychological processes in the dual structure between work and worker (Yang & Farn, 2005).

Burnout in Educational Settings

A quite large number of studies on school personnel assume that school alone might be a factor that produces stress (Chang, Rand, & Strunk, 2000). There are debates whether burnout sydrome could be observed among students or not (Maslach et al., 2001). Students could be directly influenced by the problems in school and thus they might develop burnout (Grayson & Alvarez, 2008; Howes, Matheson, & Hamilton, 1994; Tatar & Horenczyk, 2003; Woodrum, 2005).

Although the effects of education and schools on students' social and psychological development are the subjects of many studies (Kuperminc, Leadbeater, & Blatt, 2001; Normandeau & Guay, 1998; Rigby, 1999; Schunk, 1991), burnout syndrome found a limited space on student based educational research (Friedman, 1999; Schwab, Jakson, & Schuler, 1986). School might be seen as a workplace for students (McCarthy, Pretty, & Catano, 1990; Salmela-Aro, Savolainen, & Holopainen, 2009; Yang & Farn, 2005). That the reason for that is students have been required to fulfill many responsibilities related to school (Balogun, Helgemoe, Pellegrini, & Hoeberlein, 1996; Chambel & Curral, 2005; Fimian Fastenau, Tashner, & Cross, 1989). Research that aims to determine burnout levels focused on college students (Bernhard, 2007; Fimian et al. …