Document Type : Research article


1 Associate Professor, Department of English Language and Literature, Faculty of Literature and Humanities, Shahid Beheshti University, Tehran, Iran

2 PhD Student in English Language Teaching, Department of English Language and Literature, Faculty of Literature and Humanities, Shahid Beheshti University, Tehran


This study was carried out to investigate the relationship between burnout, personality traits, and psychological distress among Iranian EFL teachers. Moreover, it was an attempt to examine the effectiveness of five personality factors in predicting burnout aspects among EFL teachers. To this end, a sequential mixed-methods design was utilized. Maslach Burnout Inventory, Personality Traits Scale, and Psychological Distress Scale were the instruments administered to 110 Iranian EFL teachers working in private English language institutes in Tehran. Additionally, a semi-structured interview was conducted to delve into the teachers’ opinions regarding the reasons and repercussions of teachers’ burnout. The results of the study revealed that teachers’ burnout aspects were associated with both psychological distress and personality traits. The results also found a significant negative correlation between the emotional exhaustion and depersonalization aspects of burnout and the four personality traits involving openness to experience, extraversion, conscientiousness, and agreeableness. Finally, the results of the study indicated that the rise in neuroticism led to an increase in emotional exhaustion and depersonalization aspects of burnout. The results of independent-samples t-test revealed that teaching experience contributed to teachers experiencing less burnout. The results of the study can enlighten teachers as to what extent teachers’ burn out can be predicted by psychological distress, and personality traits, which, in turn can encourage teacher training programs to concern themselves with the mental health and preparedness of trainees to teach.


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