DOI: 10.1002/jdd.13423 ISSN: 0022-0337

Assessing burnout among early career faculty in US dental schools

Aisha D. Henry, Reginald O. Salter, Daniel L. Young, Jacinta Leavell
  • General Medicine



Burnout is a condition characterized by emotional exhaustion, low personal accomplishment, and feelings of depersonalization that may evolve as a result of chronic occupational stress. Our goal for the study was to measure the degree of burnout among US dental school faculty with less than 10 years in academia.

Materials and methods

A mixed method approach to data collection was utilized for the study and included:

A. A 15‐items demographics survey

B. Maslach Burnout Inventory (MBI) combined with the Area‐Work life Scale (AWS)

C. A survey open‐ended response to respondent's general feelings about work environment.


MBI results from the data collected from 52 respondents indicate 7 or 13.46% of respondents are categorized with a ‘burnout’ profile. The most abundant categories recognized among this group are feelings of being “overextended” (34.62%) while 32.69% of the respondents self‐report signs of being engaged. The results from this population indicate higher emotional exhaustion while levels of depersonalization are lower. The Area‐Work life Scale (AWS) for this group indicates a higher sense of reward and control, while a lower frequency of workload balance and fairness are recognized. The data collected from the sample population suggest increased higher feelings of burnout at the 9‐year mark, with increased administrative duties, and age range over 44 years.


Identifying factors in workload, work environment, and influences in the home that lead to burnout early in a faculty member's tenure and introducing reduction mechanisms are key to enhancing faculty production, satisfaction, and retention.

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