Degree Name

MA (Master of Arts)



Date of Award


Committee Chair or Co-Chairs

Diana Morelen

Committee Members

Meredith Ginley, Stacey Williams


The mental health field experiences high levels of stress, resulting in a greater risk of poor professional quality of life, likely exacerbated by the additional stress associated with COVID-19. The present study examined the effect COVID-19 stress had on the professional quality of life of the infant and early childhood mental health (IECMH) workforce and whether coping strategies and self-compassion acted as protective factors. Results indicated that higher COVID-19 stress was associated with higher burnout and secondary traumatic stress (STS) and lower compassion satisfaction (CS). The results also showed that the pathway from COVID-19 stress to burnout was moderated by support-seeking and approach coping. Furthermore, the pathway from COVID-19 stress to CS was moderated by avoidant coping. The link between COVID-19 stress, coping, and professional quality of life suggests increasing adaptive coping is likely to improve the professional quality of life of the IECMH workforce during times of substantial stress.

Document Type

Thesis - embargo


Copyright by the authors.