Faculty's work engagement in patient care: impact on job crafting of the teacher tasks

BMC Med Educ. 2018 Dec 19;18(1):312. doi: 10.1186/s12909-018-1411-z.


Background: High levels of work engagement protect against burnout. This can be supported through the work environment and by faculty themselves when they try to improve their work environment. As a result, they can become more engaged and better performers. We studied the relationship between adaptations by physicians to improve their teaching work environment, known as job crafting, and their energy levels, or work engagement, in their work as care provider and teacher. Job crafting encompasses seeking social (i) and structural (ii) resources and challenges (iii) and avoiding hindrances (iv).

Methods: We established a cross-sectional questionnaire survey in a cohort of physicians participating in classroom and clinical teaching. Job crafting and work engagement were measured separately for physicians' clinical and teaching activities. We analyzed our data using structural equation modelling controlling for age, gender, perceived levels of autonomy and participation in decision making.

Results: 383 physicians were included. Physicians' work engagement for patient care was negatively associated with two job crafting behaviors in the teaching roles: seeking structural resources (classroom teaching: ß = - 0.220 [95% CI: -0.319 to - 0.129]; clinical teaching: ß = - 0.148 [95% CI: -0.255 to - 0.042]); seeking challenges (classroom teaching: ß = - 0.215 [95% CI: -0.317 to - 0.113]; clinical teaching:, ß = - 0.190 [95% CI: -0.319 to - 0.061]). Seeking social resources and avoiding hindrances were unaffected by physicians' work engagement for patient care.

Conclusions: High engagement for teaching leads to job crafting in teaching. High engagement for patient care does not lead to job crafting in teaching.

Keywords: Career development; Clinical teaching; Faculty development; Job crafting; Work engagement.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Burnout, Professional / psychology*
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Educational Personnel / psychology*
  • Faculty / standards*
  • Fatigue
  • Humans
  • Netherlands
  • Patient Care / psychology
  • Patient Care / standards*
  • Physicians* / psychology
  • Physicians* / standards
  • Professional Autonomy
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Work Engagement*