Validation of the professional burnout assessment tool on Russian samples
On July 26, an employee of the Laboratory, Nikita Kolachev, made a presentation “Validation of the tool for assessing professional burnout in Russian samples”. In his presentation, Nikita spoke about three studies conducted on public librarians in order to test the quality of a relatively new tool for diagnosing professional burnout - Burnout Assessment Tool.
Nikita began his report with a brief digression into the definition of burnout from the standpoint of both the psychological and medical communities, spoke about the "classical" model of professional burnout, proposed in the 1980s. K. Maslak and S. Jackson, and on the basis of which the well-known burnout assessment tool Maslach Burnout Inventory (MBI) was developed, and also indicated the reasons why it is necessary to move to a new understanding of burnout, which is reflected in the studied burnout assessment tool.
The first study looked at the agreement between the two models of burnout, the “new” and the “classic”, with the data, as well as the relationship between the symptoms identified by these models.
Using confirmatory factor analysis, it was shown that the "new" model fits the data better than the "classical" one, with the latter having an acceptable agreement with the empirical data, as well as the former. In addition, there were problems with the symptom of the reduction of professional achievements, namely: there is a weak relationship with other symptoms according to the MBI model and an insufficiently high average extracted variance. The revealed circumstances testify to the impossibility of forming a single construct using the MBI methodology - integral professional burnout. The measurement of wasting in both models was also found to have high convergent validity.
The second study looked at the link between burnout symptoms and depression. Nikita explained the need for this study by the fact that in the scientific literature there are many facts indicating that empirically professional burnout and depression are not differentiated, that is, they are one and the same phenomenon.
Using confirmatory factor analysis, it was shown that both the burnout model and the depression model, independently of each other, were in good agreement with the data. At the same time, the model in which the statements of both methods are loaded on a single factor does not have an acceptable agreement with the data. In addition, all burnout symptoms have significant but moderate associations with depression. These circumstances indicate that we can talk about the divergent (discriminant) validity of the results of measuring professional burnout using BAT, since, firstly, a model with a single construct fits the data worse than with different ones, and, secondly, burnout symptoms are, on average, more strongly associated with each other than with depression.
The third, longitudinal in nature, study was devoted to the study of both instantaneous and dynamic relationships of burnout with personal resources and work motivation.
As a result of using models of latent changes, it was revealed that at the start of the study, burnout was negatively associated with personal resources and autonomous motivation and positively with controlled motivation, which indicates convergent validity. At the same time, it turned out that the dynamics of motivation is not associated with the dynamics of burnout, which can also be evidence of validity, since the model of work requirements and resources assumes the presence of two parallel processes - stress-forming and motivational.
In conclusion, Nikita noted that in the course of the studies, evidence of convergent and divergent validity of the data obtained using the BAT methodology was found. Moreover, the speaker drew attention to problem areas and possible further research: a serious problem in studies of the validity of BAT results is the lack of criterion validity, namely: does this tool allow qualitatively differentiating respondents with severe and unexpressed professional burnout and to what extent? What is the normal result? The solution to this problem is complicated by the fact that in Russia there is no diagnosis of burnout, so it is difficult to collect a clinical sample. In addition, it is important to validate the obtained dynamic relationships on other samples.
Link to the seminar recording (in Russian).