Date of Paper


Type of Paper

Clinical research paper

Degree Name

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


Social Work

First Advisor

Colin Hollidge


Social Work


This systematic review was designed to answer the following research question: What factors put social workers at risk for experiencing burnout. Databases searched were SocINDEX and Social Work Abstracts. Articles pertaining to professional burnout involving social workers were selected based on information gathered in peer-reviewed articles from the database search. Articles were systematically searched using the keywords and phrases secondary trauma, interventions, mental health professions, vicarious trauma, and clinical social workers. Out of the available articles, 14 were selected to be included in this review. Through review 2 primary themes emerged 1) occupational environment and 2) personal factors. Occupational environment refers to the aspects of the work environment that can impact a social worker such as the agency, management, co-workers, and clients. Personal factors refer to aspects of the individual social worker such as personal history of trauma or the coping skills they possess. The research indicated the need for looking at how burnout occurs and can impact social workers. Additionally, it was apparent that there is a necessity to generate research that can be applied across various social work roles.

Included in

Social Work Commons