Burnout and Job Engagement: A Qualitative Analysis of the Communication Relationships of Special Education Teachers and Educational Assistantships
Ormes, Gregory F.
University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, College of Fine Arts and Communication
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This thesis examines the way in which the communication relationship between special education teachers and educational assistants promotes feelings of either burnout or job engagement in special education teachers. Eight special education teachers and seven educational assistants were asked to explain the nature of their relationship with their special education counterpart. Grounded in the social information processing theory, this research utilized a qualitative thematic analysis to identify social motivators of burnout or engagement that result from the communication between special education teachers and educational assistants. These motivators were identified in terms of the three dimensions of burnout and engagement that were established by Maslach et al. (2001). Conclusions from this study identify four progressive elements of a teacher/assistant communication relationship that play an important role in the motivation of burnout or engagement.