Correctional psychologist burnout, job satisfaction, and life satisfaction

Aven Senter, Robert D. Morgan, Catherine Serna-McDonald, Marshall Bewley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

45 Scopus citations


Corrections is a stressful environment, but do correctional psychologists experience greater levels of occupational burnout and life stress than other public sector and nonpublic sector psychologists? Data collected from 203 doctoral level psychologists including correctional (CR; n = 44), Veteran's Affairs (VA; n = 56), public psychiatric hospital (PPH; n = 54), and university counseling centers (CC; n = 49) indicated that CR psychologists do experience significantly more occupational burnout relative to VA and CC psychologists. Furthermore, CR and PPH psychologists reported significantly less job satisfaction than CC psychologists. Although psychologists working in PPH settings reported significantly lower levels of life satisfaction than VA and CC psychologists this was not the case for CR psychologists. Professional identity related to occupational setting emerged as a significant predictor of occupational burnout. Implications of these findings are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)190-201
Number of pages12
JournalPsychological services
Issue number3
StatePublished - Aug 2010


  • Burnout
  • Correctional psychologist
  • Job satisfaction
  • Stress


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