Stress and Burnout in the Teaching Profession: An In-Depth Analysis of the Role of Personal and Institutional Resources (BELE)

Teachers’ occupational stress is a subject of much discussion, both among the general public and in the scientific community. Numerous studies have addressed the conditions and consequences of occupational stress, but few have focused on a specific occupation. The COACTIV study was the first to show that teachers’ experience of stress is associated with student ratings of instructional quality, with stressed teachers scoring much lower. Moreover, the data indicate that personal resources (e.g., adaptive self-regulation) and institutional resources (e.g., perceived support from the school principal) are associated with lower experience of stress.

Following up on the findings of the COACTIV study, this study aims to identify the specific personal and institutional risk factors and resources associated with teachers’ experience of stress. To this end, we surveyed two samples of elementary and secondary teachers—one stressed and one less stressed—with standardized assessments and in detailed face-to-face interviews. The quasi-experimental design of the study allows the two teacher groups to be compared and contrasted; questionnaire data are complemented by the qualitative individual interviews. The primary aim of our analysis is to identify occupation-specific and general resources and risk factors that distinguish the two groups.

Further Readings

Klusmann, U., Kunter, M., Trautwein, U., Lüdtke, O., & Baumert, J. (in press). Teachers' well-being and the quality of instruction: The important role of self-regulatory patterns. Journal of Educational Psychology.

Klusmann, U., Kunter, M., Trautwein, U. & Baumert, J. (2006). Lehrerbelastung und Unterrichtsqualität aus der Perspektive von Lehrenden und Lernenden. Zeitschrift für Pädagogische Psychologie, 20, 131-173.


Uta Klusmann
Mareike Kunter