Development of a work environment scale for preschools

Yau Ho Paul WONG

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper

Abstract

While unfavorable work environment such as inadequate provisions of adult furniture and manpower have been shown related to occupational health injuries and reduced job satisfaction among child care workers, yet there is no proper psychometric scale in identifying and measuring these environment factors. The present study aims to develop such a scale. Initially, I selected 15 conditions from preschool practice manuals that reflected the environment dimensions of Manpower, Ergonomics, and Social facilities. These 15 condition statements were then reviewed by two separate groups of in-service kindergarten principals. Eventually, 10 extra conditions were added and came up to 25 statements. All item statements were then randomized before validation. After factor analyzing teachers’ responses (N=141) on these 25 statements, 5 independent factors emerged (51% total variance explained), namely Ergonomics, Manpower, Room design, Optimal working hours, and Parent-teacher social area. All 5 factors showed negative correlations with teachers’ mental health complaints, but positive relationships with teachers’ global job satisfaction and selfesteem. Interestingly, among all factors, only the Ergonomic was a significant and consistent predictor of all outcome variables. The new scale appears valid in measuring preschool work environment conditions. Implications on the provisions of an ergonomic environment in preschools are discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2008

Citation

Wong, P. Y. H. (2008, November). Development of a work environment scale for preschools. Paper presented at the Asia-Pacific Educational Research Association (APERA) Conference 2008: Educational Research for Innovation & Quality in Education: Policy & Pedagogical Engagements Across Contexts, National Institute of Education, Singapore.

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