A Comparative Analysis Of Job Related Psychosocial Stress Experienced By Black And White Nonacademic Administrators In A State University System

Date of Award




Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)


The purpose of this study was to determine if a different level of stress was experienced by black and white administrators in a particular state university system. Job-related psychosocial stress was investigated in the organizational setting. A sample of administrators was taken from the finite population of nonacademic administrators from a system comprised of nine universities. Eight of the nine were predominantly white in terms of faculty, staff, and student body.Three hundred administrators including 135 blacks and 165 whites comprised the sample. The 135 black administrators comprised the sample. The 135 black administrators comprised the total population of blacks in this system.The most recent system-wide computer print-out of black administrative and professional personnel, by position, for each university was used to identify the black administrators. The sample population of white administrators was then identified by the use of each institution's most recent school catalog. From the alphabetical roster of each institution, a sample of white administrators was collected, using the systematic, random sampling procedure. All black female administrators were included in the sample of blacks; there was no separate list available for white females. The State-Trait Anxiety Inventory by Spielberger, Gorsuch, and Lushene (1970) was used for data collection.Based on the statistical measures and within the limitations accepted for this study, the data analyzed provided these major findings: (1) Black administrators as a group tend to experience more job-related stress than their white counterparts. (2) Black male administrators tend to experience higher degrees of job-related stress than any of the other categories--black females, white females, or white males. (3) Job-related stress tended to be experienced in the following order of intensity from high to low: black males, black females, white females, and white males. (4) The lower the level of administration the more stress the administrator tend to experience. (5) Female administrators tend to experience more stress than their male counterparts. (6) As the number of years of administrative experience increases the degree of stress experienced tends to decrease.No significant differences were found for the variables of marital status, level of academic attainment, and salary level. Also, no significant interactive effects were shown between any of these three variables and the variable ethnic background.Using the linear regression procedure, analyses of the four concomitant variables showed only total years of administrative experience as having significant effect on the stress measure A-State (a person's present state of anxiety). The results supported the idea that blacks experienced a higher level of stress than did whites, but the rate of decrease in stress due to total years administrative experience was equal for the two groups.Similarly, A-Trait 1 and A-Trait 2 measures show blacks having a rate of decrease in stress that was equal to their white counterparts; the former measures a general tendency to anxiety as it relates to the job setting, and the latter a general tendency to anxiety which is non job specific. However, both showed significant difference in the level of stress experienced. In summary, the linear regression results further supported the MANOVA findings presented in the first part of the data analysis.


Education, Administration

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