The Prediction of Staff Caregiving Style in Idd Community Services by staff Intrapersonal Risk Factors and the Protective Effect of Staff Mindful Attention

Restricted (Penn State Only)
Campos, Kristin Nichole
Graduate Program:
Doctor of Philosophy
Document Type:
Date of Defense:
March 27, 2015
Committee Members:
  • Brian A Rabian, Dissertation Advisor
  • Michael Cameron Wolff, Dissertation Advisor
  • Cynthia L Huang Pollock, Committee Member
  • David Lee, Committee Member
  • intellectual disability
  • staff
  • direct support professional
  • attribution
  • burnout
  • mindfulness
  • caregiving style
Objective: This study examined the prediction of staff caregiving style by staff intrapersonal risk factors (attribution, burnout, negative affect) and the moderating effect of staff mindfulness. Method: A cross-sectional survey design was used. Staff respondents (N = 40) were recruited from two sites: (1) a day program (n = 20) and (2) a residential program (n = 20). Staff completed self-report surveys, tasks of working memory, and a survey regarding the caregiving style of a coworker. Predictor variables included attributions of control, hostile attribution bias, staff burnout (emotional exhaustion and personal accomplishment), and negative affect. Dependent variables included coworker-rated hostile caregiving style and warm/responsive caregiving style. Staff mindfulness was examined as self-rated mindful attention and executive attention. Results: Controlling for other indices of intrapersonal risk, staff attributions of control and low personal accomplishment predicted a higher level of staff hostile caregiving style. Hostile attribution bias explained a modest amount of variance in hostile caregiving style beyond variance explained by attributions of control. Staff mindfulness did not moderate the association between attributions of control and hostile caregiving style. However, staff mindful attention was associated with lower levels of staff hostile attribution bias, burnout, and negative affect. Conclusions: Some staff intrapersonal risk factors widely believed to be associated with caregiving behavior, such as burnout and negative affect, were not generally predictive of caregiving style, but attributions of control and low personal accomplishment were predictive of hostile caregiving style. Staff self-reported mindful attention was generally related with lower levels of intrapersonal risk.