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Access Type

WSU Access

Date of Award

1-1-2010

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

M.A.

Department

Psychology

First Advisor

Rita J. Casey

Abstract

Teacher depression has rarely been studied in the United States. The present study asked teachers to participate in an online survey to investigate the rate of teacher depression, as indexed by depression symptoms, and whether school environment and personality related to teachers' depression symptoms. Results showed that 34% of teachers in the sample were high in depression symptoms, which is significantly higher than rates of depression in the general population. Feeling dissatisfied with one's job, wanting to change jobs, and lower levels of Principal Openness and Other Teachers' Openness in the school were related to more depression symptoms. Higher levels of Neuroticism and Openness personality traits predicted more depression symptoms. Several variables were unrelated to depression symptoms, including Agreeableness, Extraversion, Conscientiousness, and students' aggressive acts. Implications for teachers and students are considered, including a discussion of how teachers are experiencing more pressure but are receiving little support across the country.