Graduate Program

Clinical Psychology

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Semester of Degree Completion


Thesis Director

William G. Kirk

Thesis Committee Member

William T. Bailey


An exploratory study was conducted examining the relationship between burnout and personality dimensions. Sixty-nine employees from domestic violence agencies completed survey materials including the Maslach Burnout Inventory (MBI), the NEO-Five Factor Inventory (NEO-FFI), and a demographic and satisfaction questionnaire. A sample of domestic violence agencies was selected to participate from the state of Illinois using a directory listing all domestic violence agencies. Results suggested that symptoms of burnout occur both at a high and moderate (or average) level among this group of human service providers. Only one personal characteristic, age, was found to have a significant relationship with burnout. A relationship between burnout and work environment factors (e.g., amount of hours spent per week in case management or staff meetings and perceived support from co-workers) was found, however the best predictor of burnout was the personality dimension, Neuroticism. Results support Piedmont's (1993) findings suggesting that personality dimensions can help explain the experience of burnout. lmmplications and suggestions for future research are discussed.