Student work-study boundary flexibility and relationships with burnout and study engagement

Creed, Peter A. and Hood, Michelle and Brough, Paula and Bialocerkowski, Andrea and Machin, M. Anthony ORCID: and Winterbotham, Sonya ORCID: and Eastgate, Lindsay (2022) Student work-study boundary flexibility and relationships with burnout and study engagement. Journal of Education and Work. ISSN 1363-9080


Relatively little is known about how working students manage their dual roles of work and study. To extend this research, we examined the direct and indirect relationships between boundary flexibility-ability (the appraised capacity to modify a boundary of one role to accommodate better the demands of another role) and boundary flexibility-willingness (the preparedness to do so) in both the work and study domains and outcomes of student burnout and study engagement in a sample of 851 working students (76% female; mean age 20.69 years). We tested the indirect paths via work-study conflict and facilitation. Both work and study flexibility-ability and flexibility-willingness, independently and in concert, were related to student burnout (46% variance explained) and study engagement (28% variance explained) as expected, and results supported work-study conflict and facilitation as underlying mechanisms in these relationships, with the indirect path via work-study conflict being more important than that via work-study facilitation. Thus, there are benefits for students when work and study boundaries are flexible and when students are willing to make use of this flexibility.

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Files associated with this item cannot be displayed due to copyright restrictions.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current – Faculty of Health, Engineering and Sciences - School of Psychology and Wellbeing (1 Jan 2022 -)
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - Institute for Resilient Regions - Centre for Health Research (1 Apr 2020 -)
Date Deposited: 10 Apr 2022 23:30
Last Modified: 10 Apr 2022 23:30
Uncontrolled Keywords: boundary flexibility-ability; boundary flexibility-willingness; work-study conflict; work-study facilitation; student burnout; study engagement
Fields of Research (2020): 52 PSYCHOLOGY > 5201 Applied and developmental psychology > 520104 Industrial and organisational psychology (incl. human factors)
52 PSYCHOLOGY > 5201 Applied and developmental psychology > 520102 Educational psychology
39 EDUCATION > 3903 Education systems > 390303 Higher education
Socio-Economic Objectives (2020): 16 EDUCATION AND TRAINING > 1601 Learner and learning > 160102 Higher education
16 EDUCATION AND TRAINING > 1602 Schools and learning environments > 160299 Schools and learning environments not elsewhere classified
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