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A model of psychosocial work environment, stress, and satisfaction among dental students in Sweden
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology.
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology. Center for Advanced Medical Simulation and Training, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm.
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Public Health and Clinical Medicine.
2012 (English)In: Journal of Dental Education, ISSN 0022-0337, E-ISSN 1930-7837, Vol. 76, no 9, p. 1206-1217Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Dental students are often described as stressed. The stress has, among other things, been connected to stressors in their psychosocial environment and inconsistent feedback. The hypothesis of this study was that the psychosocial work environment in dental schools leads to stress and affects the satisfaction of dental students and that tolerance for ambiguity shields students from stress. A web-based survey was sent to the entire Swedish dental student population in clinical training (N=805); the response rate was 40 percent. Structural equation modeling used in the analyses contains four main constructs: psychosocial work environment, tolerance for ambiguity, perceived stress, and student satisfaction (χ2=267.437, d.f.=174, p<0.001, Normed χ2=1.537, RMSEA= 0.041, CFI=0.98). Psychosocial work environment influenced both perceived stress and satisfaction: it accounted for almost all of the explained variance in perceived stress for women, while about half of the variance for the men was explained by tolerance for ambiguity. This study concluded that about 40 percent of the total perceived stress of these female dental students was related to their psychosocial work environment. Tolerance for ambiguity shielded men but not women from stress. An improved psychosocial work environment in dental schools would decrease the stress of both male and female dental students.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Washington: American dental education association , 2012. Vol. 76, no 9, p. 1206-1217
Keywords [en]
dental students, dental education, academic environment, psychosocial work environment, stress, perceived stress, tolerance for ambiguity, gender norms, Sweden
National Category
Applied Psychology
Research subject
Psychology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-40797ISI: 000308337100012PubMedID: 22942417Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-84865985172OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-40797DiVA, id: diva2:402776
Note

Publicerad som manuskript i avhandling under titeln:

The psychosocial work environment affects female dental students more than male

Available from: 2011-03-09 Created: 2011-03-09 Last updated: 2018-10-25Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Gendered experiences of work environment: A study of stress and ambiguity among dental students in Sweden
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Gendered experiences of work environment: A study of stress and ambiguity among dental students in Sweden
2011 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Alternative title[sv]
Könade upplevelser av arbetsmiljö :  En studie av stress och ambiguitet bland tandläkarstudenter i Sverige     
Abstract [en]

This thesis explores how dental students experience their education. We aim to generate ways to understand which elements relate to the students’ experience based on current theories and models regarding the quality of working life and gender (and) power relations.  

Methods Twelve interviews with Umeå dental students in their clinical semesters were analysed with a Grounded Theory (GT) as well as a content analysis approach. A web-survey was sent to all clinical dental students in Sweden (P ≈ 805) with a response rate of 40% (p = 322). The quantitative methods included structural equation modelling and cluster analysis.

Results The GT analysis resulted in the core category “Experiencing ambiguity,” that captured the student’s role-ambiguity. Central categories focused on perceived stress and performance assessment in relation to ambiguous inner and outer demands. The content analysis resulted in three categories: “Notions of inequalities,” “Gendering,” and “The student position.” These categories present the ways groups of students are constructed in relation to the student/dentist norm and social gender relations, and how women and men of foreign descent risk subordination and stereotyping. The SEM-model contained psychosocial work environment, tolerance for ambiguity, perceived stress, and student satisfaction. Work environment influenced both perceived stress and satisfaction, and stood for almost all of the explained variance in perceived stress for women, indicating that women are constructed as co-responsible for the work environment. About half of the variance for the men was explained by tolerance for ambiguity, indicating that the feeling of uncertainty may lead to stress in men who include “being in control” in their gender identity. The cluster analysis resulted in a six-cluster solution ranging from “The fresh and positive” to “The worn critiques.” Psychosocial work environment again appeared to be the main factor. Gender also appears to be a factor as the gender distribution in the best as well as the two worst clusters differs from the population.

Conclusion Work environment stands out among the factors that relate to the students wellbeing and satisfaction, but the student group is heterogeneous and the ways students perceive their work environment relate to different processes and experiences. We suggest that the ways gender and ethnicity appear to be constructed in relation to the sociocultural gender power relations and the (traditional) medical hierarchy could be of importance for how the students’ experience their psychosocial work environment.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Umeå: Umeå universitet, 2011. p. 43
Keywords
dental students, Swedish dental education, work and organisational theories, gender power relations, ambiguity, perceived stress, satisfaction, grounded theory, content analysis, SEM, cluster analysis, tandläkarstudenter, svensk tandläkarutbildning, arbets- och organisations teorier, genus och makt relationer, ambiguitet, upplevd stress, nöjdhet, grundad teori, innehållsanalys, SEM, kluster analys
National Category
Applied Psychology
Research subject
Psychology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-40734 (URN)978-91-7459-162-0 (ISBN)
Public defence
2011-03-25, Hörsal F, Humanisthuset, Umeå universitet, Umeå, 09:15 (Swedish)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2011-03-11 Created: 2011-03-08 Last updated: 2018-06-08Bibliographically approved

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Schéle, Ingrid A.Hedman, Leif R.Hammarström, Anne

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