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Report
STRESS
a.
b.
c.
G543
Causes of Stress
Measuring Stress
Stress Management
HEALTH & CLINICAL PSYCHOLOGY
1. Causes of Stress
a.
b.
c.
Workplace: Johansson
Hassles: Kanner
The Role of Control: Greer
EXAM STYLE QUESTIONS (ESQ)
Causes of Stress
WORKPLACE
January 2010
Describe one piece of research which considers workplace stress. (10)
Discuss problems of conducting research into the causes of stress. (15)
June 2014
Outline how work can be a cause of stress. (10)
Evaluate the use of quantitative data when researching the causes of stress. (15)
DAILY HASSLES
June 2011
Outline one piece of evidence which suggests that stress can be caused by hassles and or life
events. (10)
Evaluate the reliability of methods of measuring stress. (15)
ROLE OF CONTROL
Example
Outline one piece of evidence which suggests that stress can be caused by lack of control. (10)
Evaluate the use of qualitative data when researching the causes of stress. (15)
Resources:
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Information Booklet
PowerPoint
Essay Help Booklet
Exam Style Questions (ESQ)
Activity 1
Worksheet 1: KEY WORDS

Complete the key terms related to this topic
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You can use the resources and internet to help
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Each definition should be at least two sentences long
You should use these terms where appropriate in your
essays
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Activity 2
Worksheet 2: Summary Notes
Complete summary notes for each study
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 Workplace:
Johansson
 Daily Hassles: Kanner
 Control: Geer
You can use the resources and internet to help
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2a. Summary Questions: WORKPLACE
JOHANSSON, 1978
Aims
What was the aim of this study?
Background
What are stressors?
What does adrenaline attack?
What do modern production methods require?
What has this lead to?
Sample
What are the details of the sample?
How many high risk workers?
How many workers were in the control
group?
How were shift workers paid?
Method & Procedures
What type of experiment did Johansson carry
out?
What research method was used in this study?
What were the IVs?
What happened? What was measured?
Where did Johansson carry out his research?
Results
What happened to the adrenaline levels
of the high-risk group throughout the day?
What was twice as high in the high-risk
workers?
What happened to the control group?
What did self-reports show?
When was positive mood, most reported?
2a. Summary Information: WORKPLACE
JOHANSSON, 1978
Aim
To measure the amount of stress experienced by
sawmill workers and to look for a causal relationships
on work satisfaction and production.
Background
Modern production methods require constant attention to
detail on monotonous repetitive production lines which have
increased efficiency by requiring workers to specialise in
particular tasks. However, this has led to low self-esteem
and a lack of work satisfaction in the workforce, increasing
stress-related illness.
Sample
14 high-risk workers, who cut, edged and graded wood and
a control group of 10 repair and maintenance workers. The
mean age of both groups was 38.4. All were shift workers
paid by piece rate based on group performance.
2a. Summary Information: WORKPLACE
JOHANSSON, 1978
Method
This was a quasi-experiment where the workers fell
naturally into the two groups.
Procedure
Work measures were collected four times a day through
urine tests, body temperature and self-rating of mood and
alertness and consumption of caffeine and tobacco on the
first or second day of the working week. These were
compared to a day spent at home where workers were
asked to stay up as if they were at work.
Results &
Conclusion
Excretion of adrenaline in the urine of the high-risk workers
was twice as high as the baseline and continued to increase
to the end of the day, while the control group peaked in the
morning then declined for the rest of the day. Self-reports
showed the high-risk group feeling more rushed and
irritated than the control group. More positive mood was
reported by those doing non-repetitive tasks.
2b. Summary Information: DAILY HASSLES
KANNER, 1981
Aims
Method & Procedures
What was the aim of this
study?
How many times a month did each person
take both stress measures?
Group 2 was yoked to group 1, what does
this mean?
Name the two stress measurement scales
that were used in this study?
Background
What did Kanner believe?
Give examples of the following: daily
hassles, life events, uplifts.
Sample
What are the details of the
sample?
How long did the study last?
Results
What were top hassles?
What were main uplifts?
Where was a correlation found?
Where was a negative correlation
found?
Was proves a stronger predictor of
stress than life events?
2b. Summary Information: DAILY HASSLES
KANNER, 1981
Aim
To compare the Daily Hassles and Uplifts Scale versus
the Major Life Events Scale to see if hassles were in fact
the greater cause of stress.
Background
Kanner believed that it was not just the big events in
life, but the many smaller daily events, in life, but the
many smaller daily events, such as bad traffic, queuing,
being left on hold on a phone that add up to make us
stressed. He believed a person can withstand a major
event once in a lifetime far more easily than constant
smaller ones. He also believed that uplifts such as
feeling joy or good news had to be part of the picture.
Sample
52 women and 48 men all White, who participated in a
12-month study of stress in Canada.
2b. Summary Information: DAILY HASSLES
KANNER, 1981
Method/
procedure
Each per took both the measures of stress above once
a month for 9-months. They also completed the
Hopkins Symptoms Checklist (of stress symptoms) and
the Bradburn Morale Scale of well-being towards the
end of the study.
Results &
Conclusion
Top hassles were weight, health and money, while the
main uplifts were good relationships with partner and
friends. Averaging over nine months of hassles, a
correlation of 060 was found with psychological
symptoms of stress, suggesting a strong relationship.
There were differences between men and women with
men showing a negative correlation (r= -0.18)
between uplifts and a negative mood while women
showed a positive correlation (r=0.25). Hassles
proved a stronger predictor of stress than life events.
2c. Summary Information: CONTROL
GEER, 1972
Aims
Method & Procedures
What was the aim of this study?
What method was used?
What type of design was selected?
What happened?
Group 2 was yoked to group 1, what does this
mean?
What did the control group see?
What happened in the predictability and no
control conditions?
Why was each recording performed in a sound
and electrically-shielded room?
Background
What do people prefer?
By definition, what can people do?
If people can predict when a unpleasant
events if going to happen, what should they
have?
Sample
How many university
undergraduates were used?
Which university were they from?
Results
What did GSR show?
Where was there no difference?
Which group showed a lower skin response?
What was concluded?
2c. Summary Information: CONTROL
GEER, 1972
Aim
Does lower stress result from being able to predict the
occurrence of an unpleasant stimuli or is the lower
stress related to the controlling behaviour itself?
Background
People prefer predictable rather than unpredictable
averse events. By definition, people who control the
termination of a stimulus can also predict it length.
Therefore, people who can predict when an
unpleasant event is going to stop should have lower
response to it.
Sample
60 psychology undergraduates from New York
University.
2c. Summary Information: CONTROL
GEER, 1972
Method
A laboratory experiment involving three groups and using an independent
measure design.
Procedure
The control group saw ten pictures of victims of violent death at 60-second
intervals with a warning tone ten seconds before each one. They could press
a button to change the picture as they wished. The ‘predictability’ and ‘no
control’ group had no button and instead were ‘yoked’ to the control group.
The ‘predictability’ group were unable to terminate or control the
presentation but they knew about the relationship of the warning tone to the
picture so they know when it would come and how long it would last. The ‘no
control’ group had no control and no idea how long each picture would last.
They thought pictures and tones occurred at random. Data was collected by
heart rate monitors and galvanic skin response via a polygraph.
Results &
Conclusion
GSR results showed a clear difference between the prediction group and the
other two, with a much greater stress response to the warning tone. There
was not difference in response to the photographs between the
predictability and not control groups but the control group itself show a
lower skin conductance. Therefore, being able to predict what was coming
did not seem to prevent the stress response, whereas being able to stop it
did. Heart rate monitors malfunctioned and were not included in the analysis.
Activity 3
Worksheet 3: Evaluation
Part 1: EVALUATION & DEBATES
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Part 2: EVALUATION GRID
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3a. Evaluation Questions: WORKPLACE
EVALAUTION
 Why does this study have good reliability?
 Does this study have good validity? Why?
 What are the problems with using self-report?
 What are the limitations with the sample?
DEBATES
 Are some people more stress prone than others?
 Is it useful to know about the type of work environment
that promotes stress?
3a. Evaluation & Debates: WORKPLACE
EVALUATION
Good reliability with the two methods supporting each other’s
findings.
Good validity because it is a quasi-experiment in the field.
Small sample and self-reports could mean problems with
generalising these results to a wider sample in more interesting
occupations.
DEBATES
Situational vs. Individual explanations of behaviour – are some
people more stress prone or is it situationally determined?
Usefulness – useful to know how to improve conditions for
factory workers. Moving them around the factory gives variety
and therefore reduces monotony and stress.
3b. Evaluation Questions: HASSLES
EVALUATION
Why do the findings not show a cause and effect
relationship?
Why is it an issue using self-report?
Why could this study be seen as ethnocentric?
DEBATES
 Is stress a built in response?
 Why does, using both hassles and uplifts give a more
realistic picture?
 Why are reliable scales more useful for doctors?
3b. Evaluation Questions: HASSLES
EVALUATION
This was correlational data so showed relationships and not
cause and effect. In the self-report data with scales, people
may not be honest or may give socially desirable answers.
There could be ethnocentric bias form the all-White sample.
DEBATES
Nature/Nurture could be used here because stress is a built in ‘fight or flight’
response which could be more efficient in some people than others, or it could
be an environment response.
Usefulness – using both hassles and uplifts give a more realistic picture of
what happens to most people on a daily basis.
Having a reliable scale us useful for doctors to quickly assess a patient’s
stress level and compare their score to a standard score for a normal person.
3c. Evaluation Questions: CONTROL
EVALUATION
Why is this study unethical?
Is GSR a reliable measure? Why
What are issues with other measuring techniques?
DEBATES
 Why is this study a poor reflection of ‘psychology as a
science?’
 Why is this study low in usefulness?
3c. Evaluation Questions: CONTROL
EVALUATION
The images may have caused stress to the participant,
breaching ethical guidelines.
GSR is know to be unreliable as are polygraph test
and the hear rate measures.
DEBATES
This was a poor reflection of ‘psychology as a science’
with weak generalisabilty and validity.
It was low in usefulness and failed to clarify the
mechanism involved in prediction and control of aversive
stimuli.
Activity 4
Worksheet 4: Essay Plans
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10 Mark Questions
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15 Mark Questions
EXAM STYLE QUESTIONS (ESQ)
Causes of Stress
WORKPLACE
January 2010
Describe one piece of research which considers workplace stress. (10)
Discuss problems of conducting research into the causes of stress. (15)
June 2014
Outline how work can be a cause of stress. (10)
Evaluate the use of quantitative data when researching the causes of stress. (15)
DAILY HASSLES
June 2011
Outline one piece of evidence which suggests that stress can be caused by hassles and or life
events. (10)
Evaluate the reliability of methods of measuring stress. (15)
ROLE OF CONTROL
Example
Outline one piece of evidence which suggests that stress can be caused by lack of control. (10)
Evaluate the use of qualitative data when researching the causes of stress. (15)
Workplace [10]
Introduction:
Assumption:
Conclusion:
Johansson:
Hassles [10]
Introduction:
Assumption:
Conclusion:
Kanner:
Control [10]
Introduction:
Assumption:
Conclusion:
Geer:

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