Committee Chair

Black, Kristin

Committee Member

Foerder, Preston; Cunningham, Christopher J. L.

Department

Dept. of Psychology

College

College of Arts and Sciences

Publisher

University of Tennessee at Chattanooga

Place of Publication

Chattanooga (Tenn.)

Abstract

The present study was designed to identify the impacts of stressors experienced by animal caretakers within zoos, aquariums, and shelters. To analyze these impacts, I administered a survey to individuals within this population which assessed interactions with environmental, social, and financial stressors for animal caretakers in relation to engagement and burnout. In total, 112 animal caretakers participated in the study. Results supported that physical stressors were most commonly encountered within the workforce, but coworker conflict was the only stressor to have consistent significant effects on burnout and engagement. Specifically, more coworker conflict was associated with more burnout and less engagement. In terms of resources, safety climate and work centrality were not found to moderate the effects of stressors on any outcomes. Based on these results, interventions may need to focus on addressing coworker conflict, as well as stressors unique to these occupations that are harder to capture with traditional measures.

Acknowledgments

This acknowledgement goes first to my thesis chair, Dr. Kristen Black. Her support and guidance helped me navigate the obstacles that come along with completing a thesis. I would also like to thank Dr. Preston Foerder and Dr. Chris Cunningham for their feedback and support with this project. I would additionally like to thank my fiancé Damon Behel for supporting my work and giving me the foundational idea for this project. Lastly, I owe the deepest of gratitude towards my family, who have always encouraged me to pursue my dreams and supported me through life’s stressful moments.

Degree

M. S.; A thesis submitted to the faculty of the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga in partial fulfillment of the requirements of the degree of Master of Science.

Date

5-2020

Subject

Animal specialists; Burn out (Psychology); Work environment

Keyword

Animal Caretaker; Burnout; Engagement; Stress; Resources

Document Type

Masters theses

DCMI Type

Text

Extent

x, 64 leaves.

Language

English

Rights

http://rightsstatements.org/vocab/InC/1.0/

License

http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

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