Term of Award
Doctor of Psychology in Clinical Psychology (Psy.D.)
Document Type and Release Option
Dissertation (open access)
Copyright Statement / License for Reuse
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
Department of Psychology
Committee Member 1
Committee Member 2
Suicide is an area of increasing concern in the field of veterinary medicine. As veterinary students prepare to enter the profession and take on the unique stressors associated with this line of work, there is a need for models that identify protective factors for suicidal behaviors. Specifically, research is needed to identify factors that offset the relationship between occupational stress and suicidal behaviors. To better inform interventions designed to prevent suicidal behaviors in veterinary students, emotion upregulation and downregulation strategies were evaluated as potential moderators in the relationship between occupational stress and suicidal behaviors in a sample of veterinary students. Data were collected from 171 doctor of veterinary medicine students recruited from a large university. Participants were asked to complete a series of self-report surveys online via Qualtrics. Using the collected data, a series of mean differences, correlations, and moderated models were analyzed. Results indicated participants engaged in high rates of suicidal behaviors, which is consistent with previous literature. In addition, emotion upregulation strategies (savoring) were inversely associated with measures for occupational stress and suicidal behaviors. Alternatively, difficulties with downregulation strategies were positively associated with measures for occupational stress and suicidal behaviors. With regard to buffering effects, savoring strategies did not moderate the relationship between occupational stress and suicidal behaviors. A different pattern was revealed for difficulties with emotion regulation strategies. Specifically, low levels of difficulties with non-acceptance of emotions, goal-directed behavior, impulse control, and limited emotion regulation strategies offset the relationship between occupational stress and suicidal behaviors. As a result, these emotion regulation domains are likely to serve as focal points for any suicide prevention program designed for veterinary students. Other clinical implications and future directions are discussed.
Johnson, Sara Carroll, "The Conditional Effects of Emotion Regulation on the Relationship Between Occupational Stress and Suicidal Behaviors in Veterinary Students" (2023). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 2365.
Research Data and Supplementary Material