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A Study of an Emotional Labor Training Program for Classroom Teachers

Hannagan, Colleen (2018) A Study of an Emotional Labor Training Program for Classroom Teachers. Doctoral Dissertation, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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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.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Hannagan, Colleencsh31@pitt.educsh31
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Thesis AdvisorKerr, Mary
Committee MemberTrovato,
Committee MemberCribbs,
Date: 24 September 2018
Date Type: Publication
Defense Date: 15 March 2018
Approval Date: 24 September 2018
Submission Date: 7 April 2018
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Number of Pages: 86
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: School of Education > Administrative and Policy Studies
Degree: EdD - Doctor of Education
Thesis Type: Doctoral Dissertation
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: emotional regulation; emotion management; stress; burnout; in-service training; professional development; principal's role;
Date Deposited: 24 Sep 2018 19:08
Last Modified: 24 Sep 2018 19:08


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