EARLY CHILDHOOD TEACHERS’ STRESS AND MODERATION AND MEDIATION EFFECTS OF PSYCAP: A COMPARATIVE STUDY

Abdul Qayyum

Abstract


Even though the teacher’s stress has been studied broadly in the higher levels of educational settings, but there is a minute investigation on (ECT) early childhood teachers. Job demand stress is a crucial problem, which leads to burnout that has severe effects on ECE teacher’s health and well-being. The job demands stressors (emotional demands, workload, role conflict, and work-family conflict) stimulate emotional exhaustion, low personal accomplishment depersonalization, low-quality teaching and overall teacher’s well-being in an educational setting. The current projected research aimed at investigating the sound effects of positive psychology on the teacher’s health. The positive psychological capital is a relatively new construct (PCQ-24), which is based on hope, optimism, resilience, and self-efficacy, as are four dimensions of PsyCap. There is a plethora of research conducted to investigate the problem focused on job-demand stress; burnout but there is little research where the mechanism of positive psychology was employed as direct, moderation and mediation effects in the job stress and burnout relationship.

            There are three paramount research studies in the present dissertation, which are interconnected and consistent. The sample group consists of 309 teachers from 60 schools in each country (altogether 618 samples from 120 schools) Pakistan and China. They were recruited by using a clustered sampling method including male and female teachers working in early childhood education. The data were collected using quantitative research approach and quasi-experimental design (often referred to as Causal-Comparative) method and analyzed through SPSS and AMOS 24 (Arbuckle, 2013), structural equation modeling (SEM) correlation and regression analyses. This study finds out the causes, symptoms and professional impacts of stress on early childhood teachers.

            Most importantly, it also elaborates how natural resource (PsyCap) moderates mediates the liaison between job demand stress and burnout as an intervening variable. In the first part, this research examines the current condition of job-demand stress, burnout, and positive psychological resource by calculating their mean, standard deviation, and frequency. Moreover, it evaluates the teacher’s background characteristics related to personal and school life. The relationship among the demographic and school-related characteristics with the stress, burnout, and PsyCap among early childhood teachers was tested by correlation analysis.

            In the process, the exploratory factor analysis (EFA) and then confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) were conducted to obtain the developed items of each variable. The multi-group factor analysis was employed to gain an understanding of the cross-cultural context in all variables. The results show that there are different levels of job demand stress, burnout, and positive emotions in both countries. However, Pakistan is comparatively higher in PsyCap whereas it is lower in burnout and job demand stress as compared with China. In the second stage, the current research follows the principle of causation or cause and effect theory which based on the psychological principle that second is caused by the first one or primary is responsible for the secondary. Therefore, in that scenario, it finds out the direct effect of job-demand stress on psychological burnout by using regression method analysis. There were all the dimensions of independent variable job-demand stress (workload, emotional demand, role conflict, and work-family conflict) were tested on dependent variable burnout (emotional demand, depersonalization and reduced personal accomplishment). The results show the different effects of sources of stress with the manifestations in Pakistani and Chinese cultures as two countries. For instance, the sub-variables in predictor and criterion have a different correlation, which pertained to a diversified output related to burnout.

            In the third stage, this research part developed an understanding of the moderating and mediating mechanism of positive emotions on the relationship between stressors and psychological burnout using structural equation modeling. The aim was to determine the mediation and moderation effects of positive psychological capital dimensions (i.e., hope, optimism, resilience, and self-efficacy) on job-demand stress dimensions (i.e., workload, emotional demand, role conflict, work-family conflict) and outcomes burnout dimensions (i.e., emotional exhaustion and depersonalization). The measurement model was developed to conduct exploratory factor analysis executed in SPSS. This process reduces burnout to a two-dimensional construct, which refutes the proposition that it is three-dimensional.

            Furthermore, technique exploratory component evaluation observed by using confirmatory factor analysis in AMOS aimed at determining the measurement model. The measurement model was treated for common method bias with a common latent factor in AMOS earlier than setting up the structural model producing CMB-adjusted variables used in mediation and interaction-moderation analysis. After that, the structural model was developed, permitting mediation and interaction-moderation tests to take effects. The Baron and Kenny (1986) approach were carried out for direct effects while the bootstrap technique used for indirect consequences. The Baron and Kenny technique indicates weak and non-substantial results via PsyCap while the bootstrap technique indicates otherwise. Accordingly, positive psychology mediates the relationship among sources of stress as an independent variable and psychological burnout as outcomes variable. The results show that early childhood teachers need to observe the impact of positive emotions in China and Pakistan to grab their optimal benefits and well-being.

            Summing up, the association among the stress and characteristics of early childhood teachers are highly vibrant as with personal and school-related factors in two countries. The direct effects of job-demand stress as an independent variable; burnout as a dependent variable; the prospective outcome for teachers is symbolic of cultural impacts as Chinese teachers are highly emotionally exhausted due to the high emotional demand. The impact varies in all the dimensions of occupational stress and burnout in Pakistan and China. Besides, in culture, the buffering strategy like positive psychology reinforced by social, moral, ethical and religious values moderates the relationship between predictor and criterion. Furthermore, the indirect effect of PsyCap as a mediating variable in the two cultures in the relationship of job stress and burnout are partially working and in some magnitudes of PsyCap are effecting mildly. The findings show that there is a significant negative relationship between the teachers’ positive psychology and stress in terms of both total scores and sub-dimensions. The results also indicate that how PsyCap has a remarkable positive impact on the teachers of these two countries. The findings of this research show the strong positive relationship between teachers PsyCap and well-being. Commonsensically, when the positive emotions are high as (self-efficacy, hope, optimism, and resilience) the early childhood teachers life is less affected by stressful situations or stressors (emotional demand, role conflict, role-family conflict, and workload), Burnout (emotional exhaustion, depersonalization, and reduced personal accomplishment). Apart from this, the characteristics of positive psychology have its implications, which were related to the antecedents and precedents of early childhood teacher’s professional and social life.

            Similarly, the relationship between cultural values and related aspects of human life is a constructive emotion that enhances people's well-being. Deeply and accurately, culture is the source of positive or negative psychology in the life of early childhood teachers. Culture, like informal education, can bring long-lasting influence to members of society. In this regard, the conclusions of this study demonstrate that teachers' positive psychology and well-being are the best harvest of cultural beliefs, ethics, standards, moral values and religions. In addition, these findings provide unique recommendations for the use of actual resources in organizational practice, as reflected in employee recruitment, compensation, performance evaluation, and social resource management strategies.


Keywords


Early Childhood Teachers; Job Demand Stress; Burnout; PsyCap; Positive Psychology & Wellbeing

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.46827/ejes.v0i0.2422

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