Emotional labor and professional identity in Chinese early childhood teachers: The gendered moderation models

Sha XIE, Luyao LIANG, Hui LI

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlespeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The sustainable development of early childhood institutions in aging China calls for the sustainable development of early childhood teachers, which should attend to the balanced development between male and female teachers. Yet this issue has not been adequately investigated in the literature. To fill this research gap, this study explored the gender differences in Chinese early childhood (EC) teachers’ professional identity (PI) and emotional labor strategies. Altogether, 250 teachers (146 female and 104 male, Mage = 30.28 years, SD = 7.81) from Southern China were sampled and surveyed. First, the independent samples t-tests revealed significant gender differences in teachers’ PI, deep acting, and surface acting. Second, the structural equation modelling results demonstrated that PI fully mediated the relationship between teacher educational attainment, years of teaching experience, and natural and deep acting. Third, multigroup analysis confirmed different mediation paths for female and male teachers. These findings suggest that male and female early childhood teachers differed in their sense of PI and use of emotional labor strategies. Therefore, future policymaking efforts should design and implement teacher professional development (PD) programs and teacher support mechanisms catering to male EC teachers’ needs, characteristics, and difficulties in the Chinese EC workforce. Copyright © 2022 by the authors.

Original languageEnglish
Article number6856
JournalSustainability
Volume14
Issue number11
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2022

Citation

Xie, S., Liang, L., & Li, H. (2022).Emotional labor and professional identity in Chinese early childhood teachers: The gendered moderation models. Sustainability, 14(11), Article 6856. https://doi.org/10.3390/su14116856

Keywords

  • Early childhood teacher
  • Professional identity
  • Emotional labor

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