Depression, Burnout, and Perceptions of Control in Hospital Nurses

David C. Glass, J. Daniel McKnight, Heiddis Valdimarsdottir

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

121 Scopus citations


Depression, burnout, and perceived job control (PJC) were assessed in 162 nurses. Depression accounted for over 19% of the variance associated with emotional exhaustion-an index of burnout-and PJC accounted for another 6%. Factor analysis of the scales used to measure depression and burnout documented their discriminant validity. Perceptions of uncontrollability were significantly related to higher levels of depression and burnout. Structural equations modeling suggested that perceived uncontrollability is associated with burnout, which, in turn, is related to depressive affect. Against a criterion of actual job control, non-burned-out subjects overestimated their control, whereas burned-out subjects approached complete agreement with criterion. Despite evidence for a "depressive realism effect," greater perceptual accuracy was not attributable to depression among the more burned-out nurses.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)147-155
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 1993
Externally publishedYes


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