Social Work and Burnout Research Proposal

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[. . .] Workers who are vulnerable to burnout create a demised organizational potential "with all its ramifications from personal trauma to deterioration in quality of services" (Ullmann, Goos, Davis, & Mushinski, 1971).

Research methods.

This study will be a two part cross over study, and will select a cross section of professionals from social work professions to interview regarding their personal experiences with burn out. The research will break the surveyed population into groups by age and gender demographics, and attempt to identity common experiences, factors and perceptions which affect the appearance of burn out in the professional's career path.

Part One

Likert scale-based survey of 20 questions will be created that focus on the participant's personal beliefs regarding locus of control, personal efficacy, and burn out. The questions will be ranked on an appreciating scale from 1-7, and the participants will be asked to rank the degree to which they either agree with, or disagree with the factors and situations which have been suggested in literature as having influence over the presence of burnout in the social worker.

Part Two

The second part of the survey will be composed of 6 questions that focus on the professional's personal experiences with burnout. This part of the study will seek to identify the prevalence of burnout in the different career stages of the social worker. This section will seek to identify the social workers perception of the factors which led to the inset of burnout, and their perceptions of the factors in their own life which helped them overcome the occurrence. In the case of participants who have not experiences burnout, the survey will ask questions regarding the individual's actions which prevented burnout from becoming a part of their own career experiences.

By using the cross over approach of qualitative and quantitative research, this study will be able to measure the presence of factors which lead to burnout, and the perceptions of the workers regarding these factors, and their influence.

Sampling Plan

The population sample of this research will be a cross section of social workers who work in both private and public practice. The target population will be a group of 150 workers in the public sector and 150 workers in the private sector. The target population will also be composed of 1/3 who are in their first 3 years of practice, 1/3 who are have been practicing from 3-15 years, and 1/3 who have been practicing social work for over 15 years. The population will also be composed equally of men and women. This diverse selection of research population members should create comprehensive research as to the presence, prevalence, and impact of burnout in the field.

Measurement variables

The independent variables will be age, gender, and length of time in the profession and educational level.

Intermediary variables, which have direct influence on the dependant variables but which may change between the participants are the perceived locus of control, and self-efficacy.

Dependant variables will be presence of burnout, duration of burnout, factors which contributed to burnout and factors which defended against, or prevented burnout.

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Spector, P.E., & O'Connell, B.J. (1994). The contribution of personality traits, negative affectivity, locus of control, and type A to the subsequent reports of job stressors and job… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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Cite This Research Proposal:

APA Format

Social Work and Burnout.  (2004, April 30).  Retrieved January 28, 2020, from

MLA Format

"Social Work and Burnout."  30 April 2004.  Web.  28 January 2020. <>.

Chicago Format

"Social Work and Burnout."  April 30, 2004.  Accessed January 28, 2020.