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Occupational Health Psychology

by Irvin Schonfeld and Chu-Hsiang Chang Springer Publishing Company
Pub Date:
Pbk 376 pages
AU$117.00 NZ$120.87
Product Status: Available in Approx 14 days
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& Academics:
Occupational Health Psychology (OHP) is a rapidly expanding interdisciplinary field that focuses on the science and practice of psychology in promoting and developing workplace health- and safety-related initiatives. This comprehensive text for undergraduate and graduate survey courses is the first to encompass a wide range of key issues in OHP from a North American perspective. It draws from the domains of psychology, public health, preventive medicine, nursing, industrial engineering, law, and epidemiology to focus on the theory and practice of protecting and promoting the health, well-being, and safety of individuals in the workplace and improving the quality of work life.


The text addresses key psychosocial work issues that are often related to mental and physical health problems, including psychological distress, burnout, depression, accidental injury, obesity, and cardiovascular disease. It examines leadership styles as they impact organizational culture and provides specific recommendations for reducing employee-related stress through improved leader practices. Also addressed is the relationship between adverse psychosocial working conditions and harmful health behaviors, along with interventions aimed at improving the work environment and maximizing effectiveness.


Additionally, the book discusses how scientists and practitioners in OHP conduct research and other important concerns such as workplace violence, work/life balance, and safety. The book reinforces learning with chapter objectives, highlight boxes containing intriguing examples of research and current controversies, and chapter summaries.


Key Features:

  • Comprises the first comprehensive text on Occupational Health Psychology for undergraduate and graduate survey courses

  • Covers key issues in health psychology in the workplace such as stress, violence, work/life balance, and safety

  • Organized and written for easy access by students and faculty

  • Provides specific recommendation for reducing employee stress

  • Includes learning objectives, highlight boxes, and end-of-chapter summaries



Acknowledgments From Irvin Sam Schonfeld

Acknowledgments From Chu-Hsiang Chang

1. A Brief History of Occupational Health Psychology

Early Forerunners

Engels and Marx

Émile Durkheim

Max Weber and the Iron Cage

Taylor and Ford

Frederick Winslow Taylor

Henry Ford

World War I and the Interwar Years

Impact on Soldiers

The Interwar Years

Human Relations


From the World War II Era to the 1970s

World War II

Institute for Social Research

Tavistock and Human Relations

Changes in the British Mining Industry

Hans Selye

Stressful Life Events

Stress Research in Sweden

Developments in Sociology, Social Psychology, and Industrial Psychology

Richard Lazarus

Methodological Rigor in Research on Job Stress


P–E Fit


Decision Latitude and Job Demands

The 1980s to the Present

Two Groundbreaking Studies

Occupational Health Psychology

Work & Stress

APA–NIOSH Conference Series

Doctoral Programs in OHP

University of Nottingham

Journal of Occupational Health Psychology


European Academy of Occupational Health Psychology

Society for Occupational Health Psychology


2. Research Methods in Occupational Health Psychology

Research Designs



Internal Validity of Experiments and Quasi-Experiments

Cross-Sectional Study

Case-Control Study

Longitudinal Study

Cohort Studies


Two-Stage Meta-Analysis

One-Stage Meta-Analysis

Final Comment on Meta-Analyses

Other Research Designs in OHP

Diary Studies

Natural Experiment

Interrupted Time-Series

Qualitative Research Methods



Internal Consistency Reliability

Alternate Forms and Test–Retest Reliability

Interrater (Scorer) Reliability: Continuous Measures

Interrater Reliability: Categorical Measurement

Final Word on Reliability


Content Validity

Criterion-Related Validity

Construct Validity

Research Ethics


3. The Impact of Psychosocial Working Conditions on Mental Health

Assessing Mental Health in OHP Research

Psychological Distress and Depression


The Impact of Job Loss on Mental Health

Two Pathways for Research on Unemployment

What the Research on Unemployment Has to Tell Us

Job Loss and Suicide

The Demand–Control(–Support) Model

Social Support Becomes Part of the Model

Measuring DCS Factors

Methodological Concerns

The Evidence Bearing on the Relation of the Demand–Control(–Support) Model to Depression and Distress

The DCS Factors and Excessive Alcohol Consumption

Workplace Support

The Impact of DCS Factors

The Job Demands–Resources (JD–R) Model and Conservation of Resources Model

The Evidence Bearing on the JD–R Model

The JD–R Model and Matching

Summing Up of the JD–R Model

The Effort–Reward Imbalance Model

Other Psychosocial Factors

Organizational Justice

Job Insecurity

Long Working Hours

Night Work and Shift Work

Stressful Occupational Events and Work-Related Social Stressors


Other Research Considerations

Reverse Causality

Controlling for Socioeconomic Status

Nonwork Stressors

Timing Waves of Data Collection

Decisions About Study Populations

Reliance on Self-Report Measures


4. Epidemiology, Medical Disease, and OHP

Cardiovascular Disease

A Riddle

Psychosocial Working Conditions Could Affect CVD Through Health Behaviors

Cigarette Smoking

Obesity and Weight Gain

Leisure Time Physical Activity


Biological Links From Psychosocial Working Conditions to CVD

Workplace Stressors and Human Biology

Cortisol and Epinephrine

Allostasis and Allostatic Load

Dysregulation of the HPA Axis and Other Harmful Effects


Depression and CVD

Burnout and CVD

Research Linking “Stress at Work” and Demand–Control Variables to CVD

Studies That Employed Imputation Strategies Linking DC Factors to CVD

Studies That Involve DC Factors That Were Assessed by Worker Self-Report

Focus on DC Factors in Women

Two-Stage Meta-Analysis

The DC and ERI Models Compared

“Mega-Study” of DC Factors

Summary of Studies Bearing on the DC and ERI Factors

The Relation of Job Loss to CVD Mortality

Job Insecurity and CVD

Long Working Hours and CVD


Work Schedules and CVD

Socioeconomic Status and Health

Summary of Research on the Relation of Psychosocial Workplace Factors to CVD

Musculoskeletal Problems

Psychosocial Working Conditions and Musculoskeletal Problems

Evidence That Psychosocial Working Conditions Affect Musculoskeletal Problems

Two Meta-Analyses and a Systematic Review


Other Health-Related Outcomes

5. Workplace Violence and Psychological Aggression

Extent of Workplace Violence and Psychological Aggression

Prevalence of Homicide in the Workplace

Prevalence of Workplace Violence, Excluding Homicide

Prevalence of Psychological Aggression in the Workplace

Workplace Violence and Psychological Aggression Commonly Occur

Risk Factors for Violence in the Workplace and Worker-on-Worker Psychological Aggression

Risk Factors for Psychological Aggression by Workers Against Other Workers

Focus on Three Occupational Groups


Hospital Climate

A Small Corps of Patients and the Context of Assaults

Summary of the Nursing Findings


What Qualitative Research Has to Say

Official Data on Assault

Data Obtained From the Teachers Themselves

Summary of the Teacher Findings

Bus Drivers

Consequences of Violence Exposure at the Workplace

Cross-Sectional Research on the Consequences of Exposure to Workplace Violence

Case-Control Research on the Consequences of Exposure to Workplace Violence

Longitudinal Research on the Consequences of Exposure to Workplace Violence

Longer-Term Longitudinal Studies

Shorter-Term Longitudinal Studies

Summing up the Consequences of Violence Exposure

Consequences of Workplace Psychological Aggression

Longitudinal Research on the Consequences of Exposure to Workplace Psychological Aggression

Longitudinal Studies on Distress and Depression With Longer Time Lags

Longitudinal Studies on Distress and Depression With Shorter Time Lags

Bidirectional Effects

Outcomes Other Than Distress and Depression



6. Organizational Climate and Leadership

Organizational Climate: A Brief History

Levels of Analysis

Dimensions of Organizational Climate

Safety Climate

Antecedents of Safety Climate

Safety-Related Outcomes of Safety Climate

Other Effects of Safety Climate

Mistreatment Climate

Psychosocial Safety Climate

Other Climates Relevant to Occupational Health Psychology

Organizational Leadership: A Brief History

Contemporary Leadership Theories and Occupational Health

Transformational Leadership

Leader–Member Exchange

Abusive Supervision


7. OHP Research on Specific Occupations


Mental Disorder, Suicide, and Physical Disorder

Within-Occupation Research



Mental Disorder and Suicide

Within-Occupation Research


Combat Soldiers

Posttraumatic Stress Disorder

Mental Disorder and Brain Injury


Sexual Harassment




First Responders

Police Officers





9/11 First Responders Who Were Police Officers

9/11 First Responders Who Were Firefighters

Children of 9/11 First Responders


Construction Workers

Occupational Stress and Safety

Occupational Health Issues Unique to Construction Workers


Agricultural Workers

Occupational Stress

Occupational Safety

Occupational Health Issues Unique to Agricultural Workers


8. Occupational Safety

Risk Factors in the Physical Work Environment

Occupational Health Psychology and Occupational Safety

Individual Antecedents of Safety Performance and Workplace Accidents and Injuries



Ability Factors

Motivation-Related Differences

Situational Antecedents of Safety Performance and Workplace Accidents and Injuries

Job Characteristics

Shift Work

Implications of Considering Individual and Situational Antecedents for Safety


9. Work–Family Balance

Negative Work–Family Interface: Work–Family Conflict

Situational Antecedents of WFC

Dispositional Antecedents of WFC

Outcomes of WFC

Experience Sampling and Longitudinal Research

Cross-National Research

Positive Work–Family Interface: Work–Family Enhancement (WFE)

Situational Antecedents of WFE

Dispositional Antecedents of WFE

Outcomes of WFE

Experience Sampling and Longitudinal Research

Work–Family Balance

Consideration of the Broader Context


10.  Interventions in Occupational Health Psychology

Integrated Model for Intervention in OHP

Primary Interventions to Improve Work–Life Balance

Secondary Interventions to Improve Work–Life Balance

Tertiary Interventions to Improve Work–Life Balance

Primary Interventions to Improve Physical Health and Safety

Secondary Interventions to Improve Physical Health and Safety

Tertiary Interventions to Improve Physical Health and Safety

Primary Interventions to Improve Psychological Health and Well-Being

Secondary and Tertiary Interventions to Improve Psychological Health and Well-Being


11.  The Future of Occupational Health Psychology

The Future of OHP, Chapter by Chapter

Mental Health


Personality and Social Factors

Job Crafting

Physical Health

Intermediate Pathways to CVD


Underrepresented Groups

Workers Transitioning Into Retirement

Aggression in the Workplace

Work-Related Mistreatment via the Internet

Organizational Climate and Leadership

Industry-Specific Research


Research on Specific Occupations

Combat Soldiers

Police Officers and Firefighters

Correctional Officers

The Self-Employed

Teaming With Workers to Develop Research Ideas


Worker Empowerment and Safety

Work–Family Balance

Families Responsible for Other Kinds of Care

The Self-Employed


Interventions in the Workplace

Learning From Failure

Total Worker Health™

Final Thoughts


Irvin S. Schonfeld, PhD, is Professor of Psychology, City College of New York (CCNY) and Graduate Center of the City University of New York (CUNY). He is also Professor of Educational Psychology, CUNY Graduate Center. He is the author of over 50 book chapters and peer-reviewed articles; his research has been published in a wide range of journals in psychology, psychiatry, education, research methodology, including American Psychologist, Journal of Social Behavior and Personality, Journal of Occupational Psychology,  Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology, Child Development, Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Teaching and Teacher Education, Psychological Medicine,  Journal of Trauma and Dissociation, Journal of Research in Science Teaching, Suicide and Life-Threatening Behavior,  and Organizational Research Methods. Dr. Shonfeld has received research grants from National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health and the Centers for Disease Control (on the effects of job stress on teachers), and the National Institutes of Mental health (on families of suicidal adolescents). He is the Founding Editor of the Newsletter of the Society for Occupational Health Psychology. He regularly teaches courses in Occupational Health Psychology, the Psychology of Youth Violence, Child and Adolescent Development, Experimental Psychology, Statistics, and Research Methods at both the undergraduate and graduate levels.


Konstantin P. Cigularov, PhD is Assistant Professor, Industrial-Organizational Psychology and Occupational Health Psychology, Old Dominion University (ODU), Virginia. He has published his research in such peer-reviewed journals asJournal of Safety Research, Accident Analysis and Prevention, Work & Stress, Journal of Business and Psychology, Psychological Services, Journal of Occupational Health Psychology, and Suicide and Life-Threatening Behavior. Dr. Cigularov's scholarly work reflects his general interest in optimizing individual and organizational performance, safety, and health through developing supportive organizational climates and leadership, as well as effective training programs and communications. He has consulted with multiple organizations on needs assessment, development, and evaluation of training programs focusing on organizational climate, communications, and leadership. Dr. Cigularov is a site PI for a five-year grant project funded by the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH). At ODU he teaches courses in I/O psychology, occupational health psychology, and research methods.