“Out, out brief candle!” : an explanatory sequential mixed-methods study exploring burnout among drama teachers.


Access rights

No access – contact librarywebmaster@baylor.edu

Journal Title

Journal ISSN

Volume Title



Burnout is a universal problem in the workplace, and teachers are very susceptible to facing the effects (Friedman, 1991). Burnout is a global phenomenon characterized as a syndrome of three feelings (Maslach et al., 2018). The three feelings or dimensions are emotional exhaustion, depersonalization, and personal accomplishment. Teachers often succumb to the effects of burnout, and many leave within their first five years of teaching (Rankin, 2017). While there is substantial literature on the subject, few studies specifically demonstrate how burnout affects drama teachers. Drama teachers deal with the same obstacles as teachers of other subjects. However, there are unique experiences for drama teachers that few studies have addressed. The problem of burnout is a worldwide phenomenon, and drama teachers are no exception. This study incorporates an explanatory sequential mixed-methods design. The design uses qualitative data to explain the quantitative results. For this particular study, the researcher employed a survey with twenty-three teachers of drama and other subjects. The researcher also selected five drama teachers and conducted interviews with those participants. This research methodology allowed these drama teachers’ stories to help shed light on the survey results given to teachers of all subjects. The study uses a questionnaire developed through the Maslach Burnout Inventory-Educators Survey (MBI-ES). The framework centers around the MBI-ES and shapes the research questions, data collection, and data analysis. The implications of this study are far-reaching and include the realization that drama teachers are facing burnout at high rates. Drama teachers have been exhausted emotionally from the strains of the many tasks that they must accomplish each day at school. They have faced feelings of depersonalization toward students, other teachers, and, in many cases, administrators. To make things worse, the effects of the pandemic of COVID-19 introduced new challenges for drama teachers. This explanatory sequential mixed-methods design exposes the current causes and consequences of burnout among drama teachers.



Burnout. Teachers. Drama. Causes and effects. Stress. Fine arts teachers.