PSYCHOLOGICAL WELL-BEING AND PSYCHOLOGICAL DISTRESS FOR PROFESSORS IN BRAZIL AND CANADA

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BOAS,ANA ALICE VILAS ; MORIN,ESTELLE M. (2014)
  • Publisher: Universidade Presbiteriana Mackenzie
  • Journal: (issn: 1518-6776, eissn: 1678-6971)
  • Subject: HF5001-6182 | Business | Mental health | Social Sciences | Life events | H | HF1-6182 | Human resources | Commerce | Bias of conformity | Faculty

Mental health, an important object of research in psychology as well as social psychology, can be determined by the relationship between psychological well-being and psychological distress. In this context, we search to understand: “How do compare mental health of professors working in public universities in an emerging country like Brazil with the one of professors working in a developed country like Canada?” and “What are the main differences in the indicators of mental health in work domain?”. This paper assesses psychological well-being and psychological distress for professors working in these two countries and test for their differences. The sample consists of 354 Brazilian professors and 317 Canadian professors. Data were collected through an on-line questionnaire assessing the following mental health indicators: anxiety, depression, loss of control, general positive affect and emotional ties. We compared the components of psychological distress and psychological well-being to analyse their relations. Additionally, we compared these components with work-life balance indicator. Reliability analyses demonstrated that all tested components are consistent to evaluate mental health. There are small mean differences between Brazilian and Canadian professors in all five components of mental health, but these differences are not statistically significant. Mean differences for work-life balance, gender, age, and bias of conformity are statistically different, although the size effects are small. Linear regression analysis, step by step, controlled for life events, showed that general positive affect, anxiety and emotional ties predict 31.5% of the scores of work-life balance. Additionally, we observed that Brazilian professors find more balance between professional and private life than do their Canadian colleagues. Promoting mental health is a challenge for public management sector, thus, public managers and governmental organizations can beneficiate from the studies of social psychology to improve work performance and the quality of the services offered to the society as well as to assist employees to improve their personal and professional life.
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