Kara Hargan

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master Of Arts In Clinical Psychology

Colleges & School

College Of Arts And Sciences

First Advisor

Lela Joscelyn, PhD

Library of Congress Subject Heading

Burn out (Psychology); Graduate students; Psychotherapy; Stress (Psychology)


Graduate school is a stressful time for a number of students, many of whom may be prone to experiencing a psychological phenomenon referred to as burnout. Personal psychotherapy is one component that can help students to alleviate psychological distress. This study examined the relationship between psychology graduate students’ burnout levels and attitudes toward seeking personal therapy. One hundred nine participants completed a questionnaire assessing burnout symptoms related to exhaustion and cynicism, and attitudes toward personal therapy related to importance for professional growth/effectiveness, concern with professional credibility, and concern with confidentiality. Results indicated that students with higher levels of burnout reported more negative attitudes toward therapy, whereas students who had received therapy reported more positive attitudes toward receiving therapy. First year graduate students reported lower burnout scores regarding cynicism than students who completed two or more years. However, both groups reported similar exhaustion levels. Implications of these findings for students and faculty and directions for future research are discussed.


On-Campus Access

OCLC Number