Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Date of Graduation

Spring 2019

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science in Education (MSEd)

Department

Department of Learning, Technology and Leadership Education

Advisor(s)

Noorjehan Brantmeier

Abstract

Research has shown that organizational communication plays a pivotal role in both employee engagement and commitment to the organization. However, in today’s business world, employees are required to process ever increasing amounts of information through a growing number of communication channels using various information and communication technologies (ICT). This leads to a phenomenon termed technostress. The purpose of this study was to determine if the quantity of communication disseminated by James Madison University (JMU) had any impact on the stress levels of its faculty and staff. The study utilized an anonymous online Qualtrics survey which was disseminated to all active faculty and staff at James Madison University (JMU). Taking a mixed-methods approach, the survey asked a series of questions related to employee demographics, use of JMU communication channels, and email management practices using a stress related instrument. Overall, both quantitative and qualitative survey responses indicated that a majority of the participating faculty and staff at JMU felt impacted by both information and communication overload. Unfortunately, qualitative data indicated that several employees are trying to self-manage this overload by either responding to emails outside of work hours or by trying to circumvent email by turning to alternative communication platforms. By understanding how JMU employees manage their email and what leads to stress, this research provides insight on alternative ways that organizations can disseminate necessary information without adding to an employee's level of stress.

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