Degree Name

EdD (Doctor of Education)

Program

Educational Leadership

Date of Award

May 1992

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to determine the level of occupational stress among nurse administrators and to identify the types of strategies used by nurse administrators to deal with or manage occupational stress. The study examined the relationship between selected demographic variables, occupational stress, and strategies. The research design included five research questions along with seven null hypotheses testing the relationship between occupational stress and demographic variables--age, gender, marital status, years of professional nursing experience, years as a nurse administrator, educational attainment, and hospital bed capacity. There were seven additional hypotheses testing the relationship between the same demographic variables and three categories of coping strategies. The instrument used included the researcher-designed Demographic Questionnaire, the Health Professions Stress Inventory (HPSI), and a listing of 17 coping strategies. Nurse administrator's HPSI overall mean stress score was lower than the HPSI mean stress level scores reported for nurses in previous studies. Five subscales of stressors (Stress Factors) were identified by analyzing the HPSI using Principal Components Factor Analysis. A statistical significant difference (p $<$.05) was revealed for nurse administrators for: (1) overall stress level when tested by three of the demographic variables, years as a nurse administrator, educational attainment, and hospital bed capacity; (2) subscale level of stress when testing the HPSI five stress factors by marital status, years as a nurse administrator, and educational attainment. A statistical significant difference (p $<$.05) for strategies used by nurse administrators was revealed with testing: (1) Avoidance strategy by demographic variables--age, number of years of professional experience, number of years as a nurse administrator, and hospital bed capacity and, (2) Active Cognitive strategy by demographic--gender. The Spearman Rho correlation coefficient procedures used to correlate the HPSI five Stress Factors with Active Cognitive, Active Behavioral, and Avoidance strategies revealed: (1) Stress Factor 1, Professional Conflicts was significantly related to Avoidance strategy (r$\sb{\rm s}$ =.24). (2) Stress Factor 2, Lack of Recognition as a Professional, was negatively significantly correlated with Active Cognitive Strategy (r$\sb{\rm s}$ = $-$.22). (3) Stress Factor 3, Work Overload, was significantly related to Active Cognitive strategy (r$\sb{\rm s}$ =.23). (4) Nurse administrators overall stress was significantly related to Avoidance Strategy (r$\sb{\rm s}$ =.28).

Document Type

Dissertation - Open Access

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