Date of Paper


Type of Paper

Clinical research paper

Degree Name

Master of Social Work (M.S.W.)


Social Work

First Advisor

Pa Der Vang


Social Work


This paper explores supervision as it relates to a prevalent theme among child protection workers: burnout. Prominent research in the study of burnout identifies three components: emotional exhaustion, depersonalization, and personal efficacy (Maslach, Schaufeli, & Leiter, 2001). These three components are integrated and addressed in a qualitative exploratory study. The sample, consisting of eight child protection workers, participated in a 30-45 minute semi-structured interview. The interview was guided by an instrument developed by the researcher specifically to address supervision as it relates to the three dimensions of burnout. Grounded theory was used to code and identify themes in the data. Themes are identified and discussed as they relate to the research questions. Additionally, unanticipated themes – administration, length of tenure in job, and individual styles – that emerged are discussed. Finally, implications for future research are presented.

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Social Work Commons