Date of Award

Summer 7-8-2021

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)

Department

Education

First Advisor

Sabrina Maginnis

Second Advisor

Michelle L. Johnson

Third Advisor

James Zoll

Abstract

This quantitative study aimed to explore the impact of appreciative education methods on burnout in academic advisors, including differences between supervisors and non-supervisors. Two research questions guided this study: (1) What is the relationship between appreciative education approaches and levels of burnout among academic advisors? (2) After adopting appreciative education, how do the Oldenburg Burnout Inventory scores change in supervisors versus non-supervisors? Research indicates burnout has negative impacts on individuals and organizations. Previous research on burnout in student affairs professions and departmental level interventions to reduce burnout are limited. This research addresses these two gaps in the literature. Given the consequences of burnout on individuals and organizations, it is crucial to explore ways to decrease burnout. This study proposed an interrupted times series research design to explore the impact of appreciative education methods on burnout. The Oldenburg Burnout Inventory was used to measure burnout levels in academic advisors before and after introducing appreciative education methods at the department level. The researcher did not discover statistically significant differences in burnout levels before and after the introduction of appreciative education methods. Statistically significant differences were also not found in burnout levels between the supervisor and non-supervisor groups. Given the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on burnout and stress, it is promising that there were not statistically significant increases in burnout levels. One question on the burnout inventory had statistically significant differences between the supervisor and non-supervisor groups during pre-training (p = .042). It is encouraging that while at pre-training assessment supervisors had a higher mean response for this question, at post-training a statistically significant difference was not found. Due to the limitations of this present research, specifically the impact of COVID-19, additional research is needed.

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