Using equity theory to examine the difference between burnout and depression

Arnold B. Bakker*, Wilmar B. Schaufeli, Evangelia Demerouti, Peter P.M. Janssen, Renée Van Der Hulst, Janneke Brouwer

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

179 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This study among a sample of 154 Dutch teachers examines the discriminant validity of burnout and depression, as measured by the Maslach Burnout Inventory (MBI) and the Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale (CES-D), respectively. Confirmatory factor analyses show that burnout can be statistically discriminated from depression. Results corroborate the three-factor structure of the MBI and partly confirm the four-factor structure of the CES-D. Furthermore, results of structural equation modeling analyses show that a lack of reciprocity in the relationship with one's partner predicts depression (and not burnout), and that a lack of reciprocity in the relationship with students predicts burnout (and only indirectly depression). These findings are consistent with equity theory, and confirm the central hypothesis that burnout is work-related, whereas depression is context-free.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)247-268
Number of pages22
JournalAnxiety, Stress and Coping
Volume13
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2000

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research is part of the concerted research action on "Fatigue at Work" granted by the Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research (NWO) (# 580-01-010).

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