Current research on teachers’ wellbeing presents some gaps in this field. First of all, despite the spread of positive psychology (Csikszentmihalyi, 2014), the most part of studies about teachers’ well-being directly address the negative side of well-being, namely stress and burnout, or treat positive dimensions in terms of risk/protective factors for the developing of burnout (e.g., Karasek & Theorell, 1990; Maslach & Jackson, 1981; Leymann, 1996). This approach informs about what exposes or prevents the risk for teachers to feel bad about their own work, but it does not tell what makes them feel good at school. Secondly, some protective factors, such as collective efficacy and incremental beliefs, are not addressed properly by current literature (e.g., Caprara, Barbaranelli, Borgogni & Steca, 2003; Sutton & Wheatley, 2003; Woolfolk-Hoy & Davis, 2005). Thirdly, the school levels are not equally represented: while most studies address the well-being of primary and middle school teachers, secondary school teachers are usually not considered as a separate teaching community and, therefore, are just not included in the studies or considered as a whole sample together with teachers from other levels (Sutton & Wheatley, 2003). This methodological choice prevents from obtaining important information about specific aspects that characterize teachers working with adolescents, in secondary schools (Geving, 2007; Sutton & Wheatley, 2003). Fourthly, this gap is particularly evident when emotions are taken into account: it is interesting to note that current research addresses the role of caring and emotions in teaching mostly at a primary school level, as if secondary school teachers would not care or feel emotions for their students (Geving, 2007; Sutton & Wheatley, 2003), neither, be affected by their students’ emotions. Yet, adolescents particularly engage their significant adults on an emotional/relational level, and teachers are not excluded from this emotional involvement (Geving, 2007). Finally, a gap emerged between quantitative and qualitative studies: while the firsts have a neater preference for stress/burnout-focused dimensions of well-being, the seconds tend to address also positive dimensions (e.g., Flores & Day, 2006; Meyer, 2009; O’ Connor, 2008) moreover, while quantitative studies involve secondary school teachers mostly as part of larger samples, qualitative studies more frequently these teachers as representative of certain specific teaching community (e.g., Meyer, 2009; O’Connor, 2008). Despite this, the classic pros and cons of both the methodologies remain: while quantitative methods allow for generalizing their findings, qualitative studies add more complexity to the findings. This thesis aims to partially fulfill the described gaps, by addressing how job satisfaction, efficacy and incremental beliefs and emotions towards students and professional role relate one another in order to promote well-being (and, correspondingly, prevent burnout). More specifically, this thesis aims to address if and how job satisfaction, efficacy beliefs, incremental beliefs and emotions may have a role in differentiating teachers at-risk for burnout from their not-at-risk colleagues, individuating which of these variables may act as protective and risk factors (Study 1); if and how collective efficacy and emotions towards professional role have a supplementary role in predicting job satisfaction when controlling for more self-related variables (i.e., self-efficacy, incremental beliefs and emotions towards students) (Study 2); if and how positive emotions undo the effect of negative emotions in the classroom, promoting the construction of teachers’ self-efficacy and whether the emotions felt towards one’s own professional role influence these relationships (Study 3); how teachers represent and account for their own well-being in discourse, relating it to their professional identity, the emotions perceived at school and the institutional changes occurred in the particular Italian context such as, the 2015 educational reform (Study 4).
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|Titolo:||Well-being and professional representation of secondary school’s teachers: from social perceptions about teaching professionals to teachers’ perception of “feeling well” at school|
|Data di discussione:||19-dic-2017|
|Appartiene alla tipologia:||07a Tesi di Dottorato|