Term of Award

Spring 2020

Degree Name

Master of Science, Kinesiology - Athletic Training Concentration

Document Type and Release Option

Thesis (open access)

Copyright Statement / License for Reuse

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.


Department of Health Sciences and Kinesiology

Committee Chair

Jody Langdon

Committee Member 1

Steve Patterson

Committee Member 2

Brandonn Harris


Introduction: Research has found that 30% of Athletic Trainers (ATs) experience burnout in their career. Limited literature has found the effects of burnout on ATs in the secondary school setting, though they account for 18% of the population. Objective: The aim of this investigation was to determine the relationship between burnout and personality traits in secondary school ATs. Methods: Participants included 143 ATs working in the secondary school setting and members of National Athletic Trainers’ Association (NATA). The Maslach Burnout Inventory (MBI) was used to measure level of burnout. The Big Five Inventory (BFI) was used to measure one’s type of personality traits. After IRB approval, the NATA was contacted to send out emails over an 8 week period. Data Analysis: Cronbach’s alpha was calculated for the BFI and MBI constructs. Likert responses for the burnout scale were averaged. Pearson correlation coefficients were estimated to test the correlation of MBI and BFI. Utilizing Spearman’s Rho, correlations were run to examine associations among marital status, age, race, ethnicity, and gender with BFI and MBI. Three stepwise regressions were run to determine the contributions of significant individual factors on the constructs of burnout. Results: Neuroticism was positively correlated with emotional exhaustion (EE) and depersonalization (DP), but not with personal accomplishment (PA). Conscientiousness, agreeableness, and extraversion are negatively correlated with EE. Agreeableness and conscientiousness were negatively correlated with DP. None of the personality traits were negatively correlated with PA and openness does not correlate with burnout. Further, regression analyses confirmed that personality traits predicted EE, DP, and PA. Conclusion: Our results highlight the existence of moderate levels of burnout in ATs employed in the secondary school setting. Further, participants who scored high with the BFI in extraversion, conscientiousness, and agreeableness have higher levels of EE and DP. In addition, individuals who scored high on the personality construct of neuroticism have a positive correlation with EE and DP. While it is important to have an understanding of the individual factors that may lead to burnout, it is also important to note that burnout is a multifaceted issue.

OCLC Number


Research Data and Supplementary Material