You are here:

Mental Health in Higher Education: A Comparative Stress Risk Assessment at an Open Distance Learning University in South Africa ARTICLE

, Unisa ; , University of South Africa

IRRODL Volume 19, Number 2, ISSN 1492-3831 Publisher: Athabasca University Press

Abstract

Universities depend on committed efforts of all staff members to function effectively. However, where occupational demands outweigh occupational resources, challenging work becomes stressful, followed by an exhausted, disengaged workforce. It is unlikely that disengaged university staff will provide adequate care and service to geographically distant and psychologically isolated learners. As students rely heavily on the support of both administrative staff, as well as academic staff, to manage their learning experience, the work stress experienced by both groups deserves research attention. This study employed a comparative mixed method design, including administrative and academic staff from an Open Distance Learning university in South Africa using the Job Demands-Resources measurement instrument. Findings established from 294 university staff members elucidated staff members\u2019 experience of work stress within a mega-distance learning university in the developing world. Mindfulness about the stressors that influence university personnel can inform strategic interventions required to alleviate distress for each employment category.

Citation

Poalses, J. & Bezuidenhout, A. (2018). Mental Health in Higher Education: A Comparative Stress Risk Assessment at an Open Distance Learning University in South Africa. The International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning, 19(2),. Athabasca University Press. Retrieved October 17, 2018 from .

Keywords

View References & Citations Map

References

  1. Ablanedo-Rosas, J.H., Blevins, R.C., Gao, H., Teng, W., & White, J. (2011). The impact of
  2. Bakker, A.B., Demerouti, E., De Boer, E., & Schaufeli, W.B. (2003). Job demands and job resources
  3. Catano, V., Francis, L., Haines, T., Kirpalani, H., Shannon, H., Stringer, B., & Lozanzki, L. (2010).
  4. Coetzee, S.E., & Rothmann, S. (2005). Occupational stress, organisational commitment and ill-health
  5. Courtney, K. (2013). Adapting Higher Education through changes in academic work. Higher Education Quarterly, 67 (1): 40-55.
  6. Demerouti, E., Bakker, A.B., Geurts, S.A.E., & Taris, T.W. (2009). Daily recovery from work-related effort during non-work time. Research in Occupational Stress and Well-being, 7, 85-123.
  7. Demerouti, E., Bakker, A.B., Nachreiner, F., & Shaufeli, W.B. (2001). The job demands-resources model of burnout. Journal of Applied Psychology, 86(3), 499-512.
  8. Gill, J. (2009, April 9). By the role divided. Times Higher Education. Retrieved from https://www.timeshighereducation.co.uk/features/by-the-role-divided/406078. Article
  9. Giorgi, G. (2012). Workplace bullying in academia creates a negative work environment: An Italian study. Employee Responsibilities and Rights Journal, 24, 261-275.
  10. Höbfoll, S.E. (2001). The influence of culture, community, and the nested-self in the stress process: Advancing conservation of resources theory. Applied Psychology, 50(3), 337-421.
  11. Höbfoll, S.E. (2002). Social and psychological resources and adaptation. Review of General Psychology, 6(4), 307-324.
  12. Hsieh, H.F., & Shannon, S.E. (2005). Three approaches to qualitative content analysis. Qualitative Health Research, 15(9), 1277–1288.
  13. Jackson, L., & Rothmann, S. (2006). Occupational stress, organisational commitment, and ill-health of educators in the NorthWest Province. South African Journal of Education, 26(1), 75–95.
  14. Jahanzeb, H. (2010). The impact of job stress on job satisfaction among academic faculty of a mega
  15. Marten, S. (2009). The challenges facing academic staff in UK Universities. Retrieved from http://www.jobs.ac.uk/careers-advice/working-in-higher-education/1350/the-challengesfacing-academic-staff-in-uk-universities
  16. Maslach, C., Shaufeli, W.B., & Leiter, M.P. (2001). Job burnout. Annual Review of Psychology, 52, 397-422.
  17. Meng, Q., Xu, L., & Xu, X. (2014). Applying game theory to the balance between academic and administrative power in universities. Social Behavior and Personality, 42(6), 913-920.
  18. Moorhead, G., & Griffin, R.W. (2001). Organizational behaviors managing people and organizations
  19. Nicklin, J.M., McNall, L.A., Cerasoli, C.P., Varga, C.M., & McGivney, R.J. (2016). Teaching online:
  20. O’Connor, P., & O’Hagan, C. (2016). Excellence in university academic staff evaluation: A problematic reality? Studies in Higher Education, 41(11), 1943-1957
  21. Pasca, R., & Wagner, S.L. (2011). Occupational stress in the multicultural workplace. Journal of Immigrant Minority Health, 13(4), 697-705. .
  22. Pitman, T. (2010). Perceptions of academics and students as customers: a survey of administrative staff in higher education. Journal of Higher Education Policy and Management, 22(2), 165175.
  23. Polster, C. (2012). Reconfiguring the academic dance: a critique of faculty’s responses to
  24. Pon, K., & Lichy, J. (2015). For better or for worse: the changing life of academic staff in French business schools. Journal of Management Development, 34(5), doi:htttp://dx.doi.org//.
  25. Qualtrics. (2017). Retrieved from http://www.qualtrics.com
  26. Rocca, A.D., & Kostanski, M. (2001). Burnout and job satisfaction amongst Victorian, Secondary
  27. Schaufeli, W.B., Bakker, A.B., & Van Rhenen, W. (2009). How changes in job demands and resources
  28. Schuldt, B.A., & Totten, J.W. (2008). Technological factors and business faculty stress. Proceedings of the Academy of Information and Management Sciences, 12(1), 13-18.
  29. Selye, H. (1983). The stress concept: Past, present and future. In C.L. Cooper (Ed.), Stress research: Issues for the eighties (pp. 1-20). New York, NY: John Wiley.
  30. Siltaloppi, M., Kinnunen, U., & Feldt, T. (2009). Recovery experiences as moderators between psychosocial work characteristics and occupational well-being. Work& Stress, 23(4), 330348.
  31. Sun, W., Wu, H., & Wang, L. (2011). Occupational stress and its related factors among university teachers in China. Journal of Occupational Health, 53 , 280–286.
  32. Tagurum, Y.O., Okonoda, K.M., Miner, C.A., Bello, D.A., & Tagurum, D.J. (2017). Effect of
  33. UNISA. (2007). Unisa policy on research ethics. Retrieved from http://www.unisa.ac.za/contents/research/docs/ResearchEthicsPolicy_apprvCounc21Sept07.pdf
  34. VandenBroeck, A., Van Ruysseveldt, J., Vanbelle, E., & De Witte, H. (2013). The job demandsresources model: overview and suggestions for future research. Advances in Positive Organizational Psychology, 1, 83–105. Doi:10.1108/S2046-410X(2013)0000001007
  35. Wallace, M., & Marchant, T. (2011). Female administrative managers in Australian universities: not male and not academic. Journal of Higher Education Policy and Management, 33(6), 567581.
  36. Weber, R.P. (1990). Basic content analysis (2nd ed.). Newbury Park, CA: Sage.
  37. White, M.D., & Marsh, E.E. (2006). Content analysis: A flexible methodology. Library Trends, 55(1), 22–45.
  38. World Health Organisation. (2018). Occupational health stress at the workplace. Retrieved from http://www.who.int/occupational_ Health/topics/stressatwp/en/
  39. Ylijoki, O.H., & Ursin, J. (2013). The construction of academic identity in the changes of Finnish higher education. Studies in Higher Education, 38(8), 1135-1149.
  40. Zhang, L.F. (2012). Personality traits and occupational stress among Chinese academics. Educational Psychology, 32(7), 807-820.

These references have been extracted automatically and may have some errors. If you see a mistake in the references above, please contact info@learntechlib.org.