Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)


Educational Leadership

First Advisor

Dr. Kay A. Keiser

Second Advisor

Dr. Elliot Ostler

Third Advisor

Dr. Jeanne Surface


An effective teacher is the greatest influence on student achievement. Therefore, it is essential for school districts to ensure there is an effective teacher in every classroom. Yet, the responsibilities of a teacher are countless and continually changing, leaving teachers at risk for becoming overworked and worn out. Teachers experiencing high levels of professional quality of life, comprised of compassion satisfaction, burnout, and secondary traumatic stress, are better able to provide positive learning experiences and more likely to be retained in the teacher profession. Therefore, it is sensible and necessary for school districts to understand how to support and retain teachers in order to ensure a thriving teacher for every student.

This study explored teacher self-perception of professional quality of life and whether teachers' self-perception of professional quality of life differed according to various teacher characteristics. Participants included certified teachers in four elementary schools. Each participant completed the thirty item Professional Quality of Life Scale. An analysis of teacher self-perception was completed for all participants, as well as to compare teachers in Title I and non-Title I buildings, teachers that have taught less than five years and teachers have taught five years or more, and general education teachers and teachers in all other roles. This study may provide insight for schools, districts, and school leaders on strategies to support teachers and prevent burnout teachers in classrooms or teachers leaving the profession.


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