Date of Degree


Document Type


Degree Name



Criminal Justice


Jeff Mellow

Committee Members

Brian Lawton

Eric G. Lambert

Warren Benton

Subject Categories

Other Public Affairs, Public Policy and Public Administration


correctional officers, corrections, burnout, job outcomes, stressors


While most jobs can cause work related stress, correctional workers experience exposure to stressors that often result in a more serious condition known as burnout. The effects of burnout are far more detrimental than average work related stress yet, there is a dearth of knowledge and research on correctional burnout. This study examines how work characteristics relate to correctional burnout (e.g. emotional exhaustion, depersonalization, and a decreased sense of personal accomplishment) and job outcomes (e.g. job satisfaction, organizational commitment, and turnover. It also assesses the relationship between the three aspects of burnout and the three types of job outcomes listed above. Data from the Federal Bureau of Prisons Prison Social Climate Survey (PSCS) is used to address questions of how stressors contribute to the three dimensions of burnout and how the dimensions of burnout relate to job outcomes. . The PSCS is issued annually to a stratified random sample of all Federal Bureau of Prisons employees to solicit employee views of organizational and institutional practices. The survey consists of approximately 50 Likert scale questionnaire items measuring employee perceptions of organizational operations, supervision, organizational commitment, burnout, turnover, and job satisfaction. Bivariate and multivariate analysis results support the seven research hypotheses and indicated significant statistical relationships between work characteristics, burnout, and job outcomes. Job demands such as dangerousness and high workload increase burnout and turnover rates while decreasing job satisfaction and organizational commitment. Job resources such as supervisory quality and fairness, staff camaraderie, and high decisional authority reduce the rates of burnout and turnover while increasing job satisfaction and organizational commitment. ,

Keywords: correctional officers, correction, burnout, fatigue, organizational stressors, job outcomes