The Impact of Behavioral Activation on Teacher Stress and Burnout: A Multiple Probe Single Case Design
Teachers are reporting poor mental health at twice the rate of other workers, presenting with a high number of stress related health problems, and losing sleep (American Federation of Teachers, 2017; Buonomo, Fatigante and Fiorilli, 2017; Sutcher, Darling-Hammond and Carver-Thomas, 2016). Additionally, many are leaving the classroom soon after they enter. When you combine the many stressors of teaching and certain internal factors, such as low efficacy and poor coping skills, overwhelm and
... ut emerge (Chang, 2009; Chang, 2013). Burnout results in teachers leaving the classroom prematurely and if they stay, they are more likely to provide harsh discipline and poor instruction (Buonomo, Fatigante and Fiorilli, 2017). This study used a multiple probe single case approach across participants to investigate the impact, feasibility and acceptability of a behavioral activation intervention on the wellbeing, perceived stress and emotional experiences of early career teachers identifying as struggling with high stress and emotional exhaustion. Conceptually, this study is framed within theories of reinforcement and effort-reward imbalance. Early career, K-12 teachers were recruited from public school districts in Eastern North Carolina using a purposive, convenience sampling method to receive a behavioral activation intervention delivered using a 1:1 virtual format for one 45-min session per week for 2 weeks. A combination of descriptive and inferential statistics, including the percentage of non-overlapping data (PND) statistic, was used to conduct both a visual and statistical analysis. The study had several limitations that impacted the validity of results. Key findings and implications were discussed.