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2017, Cilt 7, Sayı 3, Sayfa(lar) 462-472
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DOI: 10.5961/jhes.2017.223
Öğretim Elemanları Algılarına Göre Korku Kültürü ile Tükenmişlik Arasındaki İlişkinin İncelenmesi
Sakine SİNCER1, Gülsün ATANUR BASKAN2
1Hacettepe University, School of Foreign Languages, English Preparatory Department, Ankara, Turkey
2Hacettepe University, Faculty of Education, Department of Educational Sciences, Ankara, Turkey
Anahtar Kelimeler: Korku kültürü, Tükenmişlik, Örgüt kültürü, Öğretim elemanları
Öz
Bu araştırmada, öğretim elemanlarının algıladıkları korku kültürü ile tükenmişlik düzeyleri arasındaki ilişkinin incelenmesi amaçlanmıştır. Araştırmaya Ankara’da bulunan üç üniversiteden 416 öğretim elemanı katılmıştır. Veri toplama aracı olarak, Ashkanasy ve Nicholson tarafından geliştirilmiş olan ve bu çalışma kapsamında Türk kültürüne uyarlanan “Korku Kültürü Ölçeği” ile Maslach ve Jackson tarafından geliştirilmiş ve Ergin tarafından Türk kültürüne uyarlanmış olan “Maslach Tükenmişlik Ölçeği” kullanılmıştır. Verilerin analizinde frekans, yüzde, aritmetik ortalama, standart sapma gibi betimsel istatistiklerin yanında t-testi, tek yönlü varyans analizi, Kruskal Wallis H testi ve Mann Whitney U testi, Pearson Korelasyonu ve yapısal eşitlik modellemesinden yararlanılmıştır. Araştırma sonucunda katılımcıların korku kültürü düzeylerinin düşük olduğu tespit edilmiştir. Ayrıca, öğretim elemanlarının, tükenmişliğin alt boyutlarından duygusal tükenme ve duyarsızlaşma düzeylerinin düşük olduğu ve kişisel başarı algılarının yüksek olduğu sonucuna varılmıştır. Öğretim elemanlarının algıladıkları korku kültürü düzeyleri ile tükenmişliğin duygusal tükenme ve duyarsızlaşma alt boyutları arasında orta düzeyde, pozitif yönlü ve istatistiksel olarak anlamlı bir ilişkinin bulunduğu, katılımcıların korku kültürü düzeyleri ile tükenmişliğin kişisel başarı alt boyutu arasında ise orta düzeyde, negatif yönlü ve istatistiksel olarak anlamlı bir ilişkinin bulunduğu saptanmıştır. Ayrıca, korku kültürünün tükenmişliğin tüm alt boyutlarının anlamlı bir yordayıcısı olduğu sonucuna varılmıştır.
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    It seems that it is inevitable for human beings to be affected by the feelings they have while they are arranging their social relations. Fear is one of the feelings, which have serious effects on human relations and so on society. Nowadays, however, it is observed that fear is not only a state of mood or feeling but also a social phenomenon, and even a culture. That’s why fear, which is a very basic humane feeling, begins to affect our lives in a negative way. The gloomy working atmosphere created by the culture of fear dominating the organizations is thought to cause workers to experience burnout as time passes.

    Universities, which are organizations hosting a lot of personnel, are one of the most important institutions where academic and scientific knowledge is produced, ideas that shape the future of societies are put forward, discussed and systemized. They play an important role in shaping a society’s, a country’s and the whole humanity’s future in a positive or negative way.

    Culture of Fear
    It seems to be necessary to wholly understand what the words, culture and fear mean before addressing the concept of culture of fear in detail. The concept of culture falls into the scope of different disciplines such as social anthropology, social psychology, history, sociology and ethnology, and it is addressed and described from a different perspective (Arslanoğlu, 2000). According to Güvenç (1974: 95), culture is a very complex pattern and it is the whole sum and a function of complex relations between variables such as society, human being and the process of education. Koçel (2005: 30) describes culture as the total sum of people’s goal of life, worldview, language and style of speaking, understanding of good and bad, attitudes, behaviours, beliefs, rights and wrongs, the valuable perspectives of life, interpersonal relations, ways and methods of doing a job and reaching a goal, understanding of authority and responsibility, understanding of time, values, perceptions, signs and symbols shared by people about clothing, appearance, independence and dependency.

    The other element embedded in culture of fear is fear. Fear can be described on a large scale ranging from a simple feeling of being nervous to serious feeling of panic (Özyurt et al., 2015). According to another definition, fear is a mechanism that helps a person who comes across an unexpected state or event to focus his mind (Furedi, 2014: 8).

    After handling culture and fear, it seems proper to address culture of fear in detail. When it comes to culture of fear, the source of all values is determined the type of relation established between the person and the authority (Cüceloğlu, 2008: 319). Submitting to the authority and doing what the authority says without questioning him are only few of the basic qualities created by culture of fear. The person is not only blind to other ways apart from the one he knows but also far from thinking of such a possibility.

    In a society which is created by people who are far from questioning and critical thinking, it seems inevitable for people to alienate themselves. According to Nesin (2014: 9), a person who alienates the people in power and dominating the society is afraid of social power to crush and oppress him. Nesin states that the source of this unnatural fear is society, itself.

    Fear, which is one of the basic feelings and was formerly addressed from an individual perspective, turns out to be a phenomenon that should be handled at a social level as it affects not only individuals but also great masses by the effect of globalization, media and education. Culture of fear that dominates a society is also felt at organizations, which are each an element of society. Culture of fear, which directs people’s everyday lives, also affects organizations’ climate.

    Appelbaum, Bregman and Moroz (1998) state that there are a lot of studies being carried out about the sources of fear in today’s organizations. They list the basic fears in an organization as fear of organizational change, fear of taking risks, fear of mistake, fear of success, fear of what others think, fear of uncertainty and group decisions.

    Burnout
    Recent years have witnessed a lot of change in economic, political, cultural and social life as well as values according to which people arrange their lives. The change experienced in work life has some different reflections on employees. While some of them has no difficulty in adapting to the innovations brought by the change, some others come across a lot of problems in this process. The ones who cannot cope with these problems face burnout. According to Freudenberger (1974) and Maslach’a (1976), who contributed much to conceptualize burnout, burnout is the product of this rapid change in social relations.

    According to one definition of burnout, which is widely used and constitutes the basic of most studies about burnout, burnout is a state about work which is mostly experienced by people working in service sector which requires employees to face people, and it is composed of three dimensions which are emotional exhaustion, depersonalization and personal accomplishment (Maslach & Jackson, 1981; Maslach & Jackson, 1984; Leiter & Maslach, 1988). Although emotional exhaustion, which is focused much and associated with burnout in a way (Maslach, Leiter ve Schaufeli, 2008), is the fundamental dimension of burnout, it makes sense to underline the fact that this dimension is not enough to cerate burnout by itself. Burnout is an umbrella term that encompasses the three dimensions that are interconnected even though the relation between them is not so tight (Jackson, Schwab & Schuler, 1986).

    The factors that cause burnout can be listed as personal factors, organizational factors and job-related factors. Personal factors that cause burnout are demographic qualities, personal qualities and attitudes about job (Maslach, Schaufeli & Leiter, 2001; Cordes & Dougherty, 1993). Organizational factors can also be called as working life areas which help people get integrated with the job or cause them to experience burnout. These organizational factors are work load, control, awards, belonging, justice and values (Maslach & Goldberg, 1998; Maslach & Leiter, 2008; Maslach, Schaufeli & Leiter, 2001). Job-related factors that cause burnout can be examined under two elements which are vocational demands and inadequacy of sources while it is important to underline that these two elements are closely interrelated (Maslach, Schaufeli & Leiter, 2001).

    Burnout is not a phenomenon that comes out suddenly, but it is a state that develops (Maslach & Goldberg, 1998). Therefore, ignoring the symptoms of burnout can have very serious results (Ardıç & Polatçı, 2008). At this point, it seems crucial to be aware of the symptoms of burnout in order to cope with burnout. While symptoms of burnout can differ from person to person, they can be listed as physical symptoms, psychological symptoms and behavioural symptoms.

    Although burnout comes out because of job-related issues, its effects and results are not limited to the person’s working life only. The importance of burnout results from the fact that it affects people’s life at all points (Cordes & Dougherty, 1993). It is stated that burnout can have very serious and dangerous effects on people’s personal life, working life and family life (Maslach & Jackson, 1981).

    As the nature of burnout has been described so far, it seems proper to focus on ways and methods to cope with burnout. While there are some ways to cope with burnout at individual and organizational level, the new approaches put forward to deal with burnout are based on a holistic understanding. According to this holistic approach, which was put forward by Maslach and Goldberg (1998), it is of great importance to accept that burnout is a real risk whereas it is necessary to engage with the job by means of establishing a harmony between the person and working life areas in order to prevent burnout. Another important quality of this new approach is that it emphasizes the fact that it is wiser and necessary to take precautionary measures before burnout comes out instead of using methods to cure burnout after it appears (González Romá, et al., 2006). Because of this reason, it seems necessary to state that a proactive, not reactive, approach is important to cope with burnout.

    Starting from this point, this study aims at analysing the relation between culture of fear and burnout according to the perceptions of academics working at different faculties at three universities located in Ankara. Within this framework, these questions have been studied to find an answer for each of them: (1) What is the level of culture of fear and burnout perceived by academics? (2) Do the levels of culture of fear and burnout perceived by academics differ at a significant level statistically according to the variables such as gender, age and academic title? (3) Is there a significant relation statistically between the levels of culture of fear and burnout perceived by academics? (4) How much of the perceived culture of fear can be explained by the perceived burnout?

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    Relational screening model, which is a descriptive research, has been used in this study. The data gathered for this study have been analysed by using quantitative techniques.

    Working Group
    The working group of this study is composed of 416 academics working at Faculty of Education, Faculty of Economics and Administrative Sciences, and Faculty of Engineering at Başkent University, Hacettepe University and Middle East Technical University located in Ankara in 2015-2016 Academic Year. This study does not have an aim of generalizing the results to the population. Instead, it focuses on generalizing the qualities.

    50.5% (n=210) of the participants are female while 49.5% (n=206) of them are male. 42.1% (n=175) of the participants are between the ages of 20-29, 32.7% (n=136) of them are between the ages of 30-39 and 25.2% (n=105) of them are over the age of 40. When the participants are analysed according to their marital status, 51.4% (n=214) of them are married while 48.6% (n=202) of them are single. 18% (n=75) of the participants are working at Başkent University, 39.7% (n=165) of them are working at Hacettepe University and 42.3% (n=176) of them are working at Middle East Technical University. When the participants are analysed according to their academic title, it is clear that 10.8% (n=45) of them are professor doctor, 9.9% (n=41) of them are associate professor doctor, 17.3% (n=72) of them are assistant professor and 62% (n=258) of them are research assistants.

    Data Collection Tools
    In this study, a personal information form, Maslach Burnout Inventory and Scale of Culture of Fear, which was adopted into Turkish within the framework of this study have been used to collect data from the participants. The personal information form, which was prepared by the researcher to collect demographic information from the participants, includes questions about gender, age, marital status and academic title.

    Another tool to gather data in this study is Maslach Burnout Inventory developed by Maslach and Jackson (1981) and adopted into Turkish culture by Ergin (1993). While the original form of the scale is arranged as seven-point likert-type scale, the Turkish version of the scale is arranged as five-point (never, rarely, sometimes, frequently, always) because the aim here is suitability with the Turkish culture.

    While adopting the scale into Turkish, test-retest method was used for reliability analysis and internal consistency coefficients were measured. Internal consistency coefficient was found to be .83 for the sub-dimension of emotional exhaustion, .65 for the sub-dimension of personal accomplishment and .72 for the sub-dimension of depersonalization. Test-retest reliability coefficient was found to be .83 for emotional exhaustion, .72 for personal accomplishment and .67 for depersonalization. Explanatory factor analysis was carried out to determine the construct validity of the scale and a structure composed of three factors was reached. These factors are called as emotional exhaustion, personal accomplishment and depersonalization. Factor load changes between .38 and .79 for the sub-dimension of emotional exhaustion (item no 1, 2, 3, 6, 8, 13, 14, 16 and 20), between .37 and .65 for the sub-dimension of personal accomplishment (item no 4, 7, 9, 12, 17, 18, 19 and 21), between .30 and .78 for the sub-dimension of depersonalization (item no 5, 10, 11, 15 and 22). While the scale is composed of 22 items in total, the items belonging to the subdimension of personal accomplishment are graded negative. However, as the scale is evaluated on the basis of dimensions and all the items belonging to the sub-dimension of personal accomplishment are graded negative, the items do not need to be reversed.

    In this study, internal consistency coefficients were measured and confirmatory factor analysis was carried out in order to obtain evidence related to the reliability and validity of the points gathered with the scale used in this study. Internal consistency coefficients measured for the sub-dimensions of the scale were found to be .84 for the sub-dimension of emotional exhaustion, .73 for the sub-dimension of personal accomplishment and .72 for the sub-dimension of depersonalization. Confirmatory factor analysis was carried out to obtain evidence related to the structure validity of the data gathered within the framework of this study. At the end of the analysis about the data gathered from the participants, error variance, factor load and factor correlation belonging to the measurement model were found to be meaningful at the level of .05. Thus, the structure having three factors was confirmed. As a result, the value of X2/sd was found to be 2.75<3.00 and this value shows that there is a perfect fit in the model (Kline, 2011). The value of GFI was found to be .89 while the value of RMSEA was found to be .065. The fact that the value of RMSEA is <.08 shows that there is a good fit (Jöreskog & Sörbom, 1993). The value of NNFI was found to be .94>.90 and this value shows there is an acceptable fit in the model (Hu & Bentler, 1999). The value of CFI was found to be .95 and it is stated that if this value is .95 or over, this shows there is a good fit in the model (Hooper, Coughlan & Mullen, 2008).

    Scale of Culture of Fear, which was developed by Ashkanasy and Nicholson (2003), is composed of 13 items in total. It is arranged as seven-point likert-type scale and ranges from “I totally disagree” to “I totally agree.” The minimum point to be graded in the scale is 13 while the maximum point is 91. The scale has only one factor. Internal consistency coefficient of the scale is found to be .79. In order to prevent the subjectivity created by the concept of fear, half of the items in the scale are reversed so that they reflect the feeling of not having any fear. According to this, items number 2, 4, 6, 8, 10 and 12 are graded negative. Having higher points from the scale shows that the level of fear is also high.

    In order to adopt the Scale of Culture of Fear into Turkish, the process of adoption suggested by Seçer (2015) was used. This process comprises 8 steps, which are translation, examining the translation, back-translation, shaping the first version of the scale, analysis of language validity, shaping the final version of the scale, pilot study and analysis of validity and reliability. During the process of adoption, the suitability of total item correlations was evaluated and items were amended. 62 participants participated in the first pilot study and at the end of this first pilot study, it was found out that there were 4 items whose total item correlations were under .30 (items no 1, 2, 6 and 12).

    After getting opinions of the experts in the fields, the items were amended and total item correlations were re-evaluated with the second pilot study. 55 participants participated in the second pilot study and only one item (item no 1) had a value under .30. This item had total item correlation between .20 and .30. Seçer (2015) states that if the total item correlation is over .20, the item should be kept in the scale. Instead, it should be re-examined. After making the necessary changes with this item, the scale was used with the real sample.

    Structure validity of the Scale of Culture of Fear was examined with confirmatory factor analysis. At the end of the analysis related to the data gathered from the participants for this study, error variance, factor lead and factor correlation were found to be meaningful at the level of .05. Thus, the structure having one factor was confirmed. The value of GFI was found to be .93 while the value of RMSEA was found to be .07. The fact that the value of RMSEA is <.08 shows that there is a good fit (Jöreskog & Sörbom, 1993). The value of NNFI was found to be .95>.90 and this value shows an acceptable fit in the model (Hu and Bentler, 1999). The value of CFI was found to be .96. If this value is .95 or over, this shows that the model displays a good fit (Hooper, Coughlan & Mullen, 2008).

    Internal consistency (Cronbach alfa) coefficient was measured in order to examine the reliability of the scale points. Internal consistency coefficient of the scale was found to be .86 and according to Kline (2011), if the Cronbach Alfa coefficient is over .70, this is enough to show internal consistency.

    Processing and Analysing the Data
    The data collected from the participants were analysed using the programs of SPSS 22.0 and LISREL 8. At the beginning of this process, negative items among the data were reversed. Accordingly, the items number 2, 4, 6, 8, 10 and 12 in the Scale of Culture of Fear were reversed. As categories are implemented in the reversed version in Maslach Burnout Inventory, all the items in this scale were reversed. The dimensions of Maslach Burnout Inventory are evaluated independently, so the negative-graded items in the sub-dimension of personal accomplishment were not reversed once more as is suggested by the researcher who adopted the scale into Turkish.

    After obtaining the validity and reliability evidences regarding the points, frequency and percentage values were calculated in order to investigate the demographic information of the participants. Descriptive statistical techniques (mean, standard deviation, maximum and minimum values) were used in order to analyse the level of culture of fear perceived by the academics. Also, the gathered data were processed to obtain mean and standard deviation values for each of the item in the Scale of Culture of Fear, and frequency and percentage values were calculated to determine the reaction to each category. Descriptive statistical techniques (mean, standard deviation, maximum and minimum values) were used for each sub-dimension of burnout (emotional exhaustion, personal accomplishment, depersonalization) in order to analyse the level of burnout perceived by the academics. The relation between the perception of culture of fear and the sub-dimensions of emotional exhaustion, personal accomplishment and depersonalization in the Maslach Burnout Inventory was investigated by means of Pearson correlation coefficient.

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    Descriptive statistics obtained to determine the level of culture of fear perceived by the academics are given in Table 1.


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    Table 1: Descriptive Statistics Regarding the Points Obtained by the Academics in the Scale of Culture of Fear

    When Table 1 is examined, it is apparent that the mean of the points obtained by 416 academics in the scale of culture of fear is lower than the average (X=2.750). Starting from this point, it can be concluded that the level of culture of fear perceived by the academics is a bit low.

    In order to determine the level of burnout perceived by the academics, descriptive statistics were obtained for each subdimension in Maslach Burnout Inventory. The results can be seen in Table 2.


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    Table 2: Descriptive Statistics Regarding the Sub-Dimensions in Maslach Burnout Inventory

    When Table 2 is examined, it is clear that the mean of the points obtained by the academics regarding the sub-dimensions of emotional exhaustion (X=2.190) and depersonalization (X =1.813) in Maslach Burnout Inventory overlaps with the category of rarely while the mean of the points obtained from the sub-dimension of personal accomplishment (X=3.772), which contains items that are opposite to the burnout, overlaps with the category of frequently. According to this statistics, academics rarely face emotional exhaustion and depersonalization. The sub-dimension of personal accomplishment is composed of items that reflect the effectiveness and productivity of people and in this sub-dimension, academics mostly state that they have personal accomplishment.

    The effect of gender on the perceived culture of fear is examined by means of t test for independent samples. The results are given in Table 3.


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    Table 3: t-Test for Independent Samples Regarding the Points Obtained by the Academics According to Gender in the Scale of Culture of Fear

    When Table 3 is examined, it is apparent that the level of culture of fear perceived by the academics does not differ at a significant level according to gender [t(414)=.587, p=.557>.05]. Therefore, it can be concluded that there is no statistically significant difference between point averages of female (X =2.779) and male (X=2.721) participants.

    The level of culture of fear perceived by the academics according to their age is examined by means of using Kruskal Wallis H Test. The results are shown in Table 4.


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    Table 4: Kruskal Wallis H Test Regarding the Points Obtained by the Academics According to Age in the Scale of Culture of Fear

    When Table 4 is examined, it is clear that the level of culture of fear differs at a significant level statistically according to age [X2(sd=2)=24.447, p<.05]. When the mean rank is examined, it is seen that the group having the highest mean is the group between the ages of 30-39. It can be concluded that the level of culture of fear is higher in this group than the other groups, which are 20-29 and over 40. The lowest mean rank belongs to the group whose age is over 40.

    The level of culture of fear perceived by the academics according to their academic title is examined by means of using Kruskal Wallis H Test. The results are shown in Table 5.


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    Table 5: Kruskal Wallis H Test Regarding the Points Obtained by the Academics According to Academic Title in the Scale of Culture of Fear

    When Table 5 is examined, it is apparent that the level of culture of fear differs at a significant level statistically according to academic title [X2(sd=3)=18.654, p<.05]. When the mean rank is examined, the group that has the highest average point is composed of research assistants. It can be said that the level of culture of fear perceived by this group is higher than the level of culture of fear perceived by the other groups (Prof. Dr., Assoc. Prof. Dr., Assist. Prof. Dr.) The group having the lowest mean rank is composed of professor doctors.

    The effect of gender on the level of burnout sub-dimensions, which are emotional exhaustion, personal accomplishment and depersonalization is examined by means of t test for independent samples. The results are given in Table 6.


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    Table 6: t-Test for Independent Samples Regarding the Points Obtained by the Academics According to Gender in the Sub-Dimensions of Maslach Burnout Inventory

    When Table 6 is examined, it is clear that the points obtained by the academics in the sub-dimension of emotional exhaustion [t(414)=1.496, p=.135>.05], personal accomplishment [t(414)= -1.296, p=.196>.05] and depersonalization [t(414)= -.601, p=.548>.05] do not show a significant difference according to gender. So, it can be concluded that there is no significant difference between the levels of emotional exhaustion, personal accomplishment and depersonalization perceived by female and male participants.

    The effect of age on participants’ levels of emotional exhaustion, personal accomplishment and depersonalization was examined by means of using one-way variance analysis (ANOVA). The differences between the groups were examined using Scheffe test as the equality of the variances was maintained and there was a difference between the samples. The results are given in Table 7.


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    Table 7: One-Way Variance Analysis Regarding the Points Obtained by the Academics in the Sub-Dimensions of Maslach Burnout Inventory

    When Table 7 is examined, it seems clear that the level of emotional exhaustion perceived by the academics does not display a significant difference according to age [F(2-413)=2.498, p>.05, partial Ŋ2=.01]. The level of personal accomplishment perceived by the academics displays a significant difference according to age [F(2-413)=6.891, p<.05, partial Ŋ2=.03]. According to statistics, the level of personal accomplishment perceived by the academics aged between 20-29 (X=3.698) and 30-39 ( X=3.744) is lower than the level of personal accomplishment perceived by the academics aged over 40 (X=3.930). The level of depersonalization perceived by the academics displays a significant difference according to age [F(2-413)=4.946, p<.05, partial Ŋ2=.02]. According to statistics, the level of depersonalization perceived by the academics aged between 20-29 (X =1.875) and 30-39 (X=1.869) is higher than the level of personal accomplishment perceived by the academics aged over 40 (X=1.636).

    The effect of academic title age on participants’ level of personal accomplishment was examined by means of using oneway variance analysis (ANOVA). The differences between the groups were examined using Scheffe test as the equality of the variances was maintained and there was a difference between the samples. The results are given in Table 8.


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    Table 8: One-Way Variance Analysis Regarding the Points Obtained by the Academics in the Sub-Dimension of Personal Accomplishment in Maslach Burnout Inventory According to Academic Title

    When Table 8 is examined, it is apparent that the level of personal accomplishment perceived by the academics displays a significant difference according to academic title [F(3-412)=5.591, p<.05, partial Ŋ2=.04]. According to statistics, the level of personal accomplishment perceived by research assistants (X =3.698) is lower than the level of personal accomplishment perceived by professor doctor (X=4.000).

    The level of emotional exhaustion and depersonalization perceived by the academics according to their academic title is examined by means of using Kruskal Wallis H Test. The results are shown in Table 9.


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    Table 9: Kruskal Wallis H Test Regarding the Points Obtained by the Academics According to Academic Title in Emotional Exhaustion and Depersonalization

    When Table 9 is examined, it is apparent that the level of emotional exhaustion perceived by the academics does not display a significant difference according to academic title [X2(sd=3)=4.209, p>.05]. Similarly, the level of depersonalization perceived by the academics does not display a significant difference according to academic title [X2(sd=3)=7.179, p>.05].

    The relation between the points obtained by the academics in the Scale of Culture of Fear and Maslach Burnout Inventory, with each sub-dimension, which are emotional exhaustion, personal accomplishment and depersonalization, was examined using Pearson correlation coefficient. The results are given in Table 12. According to Büyüköztürk (2011), correlation coefficients under .30 are regarded to be low, the ones between .30 - .70 are regarded to be medium and those over .70 are regarded to be high.

    When Table 10 is examined, it is apparent that there is a statistically significant positive relation at medium level between culture of fear and the sub-dimension of emotional exhaustion in Maslach Burnout Inventory perceived by the academics [r=.581, n=416, p=.000<.001]. So, it can be concluded that when it comes to culture of fear and emotional exhaustion, if one rises, the other will rise as well. It is clear from the table that there is a statistically significant negative relation at medium level between culture of fear and the sub-dimension of personal accomplishment perceived by the academics [r=-.382, n=416, p=.000<.001]. Therefore, it can be concluded that when culture of fear and personal accomplishment are in question, if one increases, the other will decrease. It is also clear from the table that there is a statistically significant positive relation at medium level between culture of fear and the sub-dimension of depersonalization [r=.531, n=416, p=.000<.001]. Hence, it can be said that when culture of fear and depersonalization are in question, if one rises, the other will also rise.

    Structural equation modelling was used in the study to determine the level of how much culture of fear predicts the subdimension of emotional exhaustion, personal accomplishment and depersonalization in Maslach Burnout Inventory. The relations between the variables were determined with the method of maximum likelihood. Direct relations were evaluated in the model, in which culture of fear was an external variable while emotional exhaustion, personal accomplishment and depersonalization were internal variables. As a result, all t values regarding structural model were found to be significant at .05 level [temotional exhaustion=13.44, tpersonal accomplishmentı=-5.50, tdepersonalization =7.88].


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    Table 10: The Relation Between Culture of Fear and Sub-Dimensions of Maslach Burnout Inventory

    While evaluating the fit of structural equation modelling, x-square/sd, RMSEA (Root Mean Square Error of Approximation9, NNFI (Non-normed Fit Index) and CFI (Comparative Fit Index) were used. Fit indices obtained at the end of the analysis are given in Table 11.


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    Table 11: Structural Equation Modelling Fit Indices Regarding the Relation Between the Scale of Culture of Fear and the Sub-Dimensions of Emotional Exhaustion, Personal Accomplishment and Depersonalization in the Maslach Burnout Inventory

    When Table 11 is examined, the value of X2/sd was found to be 2.31<3.00 and this value shows that there is a perfect fit in the model (Kline, 2011). The value of GFI was found to be .85 while the value of RMSEA was found to be .056. The value of NNFI was found to be .95>.90. The value of CFI was found to be .96. It is stated that if this value is over .95, this shows that the model has a good fit (Hooper, Coughlan, & Mullen, 2008). According to different criteria regarding goodness of fit (x-square/sd, RMSEA, NNFI, CFI), it is clear that the model displays a good fit in general. The results show that the model is confirmed. The standardized values regarding the model are given in Figure 1.


    Büyütmek İçin Tıklayın
    Figure 1: Route diagram regarding the relation between culture of fear and sub-dimensions of emotional exhaustion, personal accomplishment and depersonalization.

    As a result, correlation coefficient between culture of fear and emotional exhaustion was found to be γ=.71. This value shows that the effect of culture of fear on emotional exhaustion is high (γ=.71>.50). Moreover, this results proves that there is a causal relationship between culture of fear and emotional exhaustion. There is a statistically significant positive relation between culture of fear and emotional exhaustion. Culture of fear predicts the variability of emotional exhaustion at a level of 50%.

    Correlation coefficient between culture of fear and personal accomplishment was found to be γ=-.52. This value shows that the effect of culture of fear on personal accomplishment is high (γ=-.52>.50). Moreover, this results proves that there is a causal relationship between culture of fear and personal accomplishment. There is a statistically significant negative relation between culture of fear and emotional exhaustion. Culture of fear predicts the variability of personal accomplishment a level of 27%.

    Correlation coefficient between culture of fear and depersonalization was found to be γ=.65. This value shows that the effect of culture of fear on depersonalization is high (γ=.52>.50). Moreover, this results proves that there is a causal relationship between culture of fear and depersonalization. There is a statistically significant positive relation between culture of fear and depersonalization. Culture of fear predicts the variability of depersonalization at a level of 42%.

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    In this study, the relation between culture of fear and burnout according to the perceptions of academics working at different faculties at three universities located in Ankara was analysed. At the end of the analysis, it was concluded that the level of culture of fear perceived by the participant academics was a bit low. This result is in parallel with the fact that universities should be places where academic can express their opinions freely although fear combined with panic is apparent all over society. However, it should be stated that even though fear perceived at universities is found to be low, this low-level fear can damage the freedom at universities unless necessary precautions are taken.

    It was also found out that that participants’ level of culture of fear did not differ according to the variable of gender whereas it differed according to the variables of age and academic title. The results show that the participants perceiving the highest level of culture of fear are between the age of 30-39 while the ones having the lowest level of culture of fear are 40 years old or more. While research assistants were found to have the highest level of culture of fear, professor doctors were perceiving culture of fear at the lowest level.

    It is not surprising that academics who have spent years in their profession and proved to be successful are not vulnerable to culture of fear. However, those academics who are yet at the beginning of their professional life, especially, research assistants are likely to be more vulnerable to culture of fear.

    While the level of burnout perceived by the participants was found to be low when it comes to the sub-dimensions of emotional exhaustion and depersonalization, it was concluded at the end of the study that participants had a perception of a high level of personal accomplishment. In other words, it seems appropriate to state that academics’ level of burnout is not at a critical level at all sub-dimensions. When the literature is reviewed, it is possible to come across some studies that support the result of this study. Budak and Süregevil (2005), Çavuş, Gök and Kurtay (2007), Ergin (1995), Özdemir (2001) and also Tetik (2011) found out in their studies that the participants had a low level of burnout at all sub-dimensions.

    The level of burnout perceived by the participants did not differ according to the variable of gender at all sub-dimensions. In literature review, there are some studies supporting the result of this study. Dağcı and Kartopu (2014), Dolunay (2002), Gürdoğan and Atabey (2014), Hogan and McKnight (2007) as well as Maslach and Jackson (1985) found out in their studies that none of the sub-dimensions of burnout displayed a significant difference according to the variable of gender.

    The level of emotional exhaustion perceived by the participants did not display a statistically significant difference according to the variable of age while the participants that were 40 years old or more had the highest level of personal accomplishment and lowest level of depersonalization. So, it can be concluded that younger academics had a higher level of burnout than the elder ones. Also, the level of emotional exhaustion and depersonalization perceived by the participants did not differ significantly according to academic title, but it was concluded that research assistants had the lowest level of personal accomplishment while professor doctors had the highest level of personal accomplishment.

    It is apparent from the results that young academics who have just started academic life with idealistic feelings are more likely to be dissatisfied with what they see and find about their organization or profession. It is thought that as years pass, young academics see that the path to success has some barriers and difficulties and they are more likely to get rid of burnout as they gain experience and knowledge in years.

    It was found out at the end of the analysis that there was a causal relationship between the levels of culture of fear and burnout perceived by the academics. The results show that there is a statistically significant positive relation between culture of fear and emotional exhaustion. Culture of fear predicts the variability of emotional exhaustion at a level of 50%. There is a statistically significant negative relation between culture of fear and emotional exhaustion. Culture of fear predicts the variability of personal accomplishment a level of 27%. There is a statistically significant positive relation between culture of fear and depersonalization. Culture of fear predicts the variability of depersonalization at a level of 42%.

    The relation between culture of fear and burnout gives the signal that culture fear can bring other negative feelings that will cause failure and unhappiness. In an environment where culture of fear is dominant, analytical thinking and questioning, that bring growth and progress, cannot come to life.

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    At the end of the analysis in this study, the level of culture of fear and burnout perceived by the academics working at three different universities in Ankara was found to be low. Starting from this point, although the level of culture of fear and burnout perceived by the academics is low, it seems appropriate to look for ways to eliminate culture of fear and burnout at universities totally, and the necessary precautions should be taken for this end.

    According to the results of this study, mostly younger academics face the culture of fear and burnout at universities. Because of this reason, research assistants, who are at the beginning of their academic working life, should be supported to get rid of the perception of fear and feeling of burnout. Also, they should be provided with opportunities that will foster their personal and vocational development.

    When it is considered that culture of fear dominating organizations is a significant predictor of the level of burnout perceived by the academics, it seems vital to make the necessary arrangements regarding managers at organizations. In this context, it should be an essential prerequisite for the people who want to be or will be elected as managers to have the necessary education about administrative sciences and organizational culture. Moreover, the managers who are in office now although they have not had such an education should be made to get the necessary education through seminars or in-service training.

    Richards (2003) states that the most dangerous type of fear is unacknowledged fear. Starting from this point, a peaceful working environment should be established so that the employees feel the freedom to share their problems with the managers when they feel fear or experience burnout at their workplace.

    It is thought that the relation between culture of fear and burnout can be accepted to be a warning against other negative feelings caused by culture of fear. At this point, other feelings and phenomena caused by culture of fear should be handled in further studies.

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