Macquarie University
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The influence of social support on wellbeing: experiences of primary school principals and the role of upward support

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posted on 2022-03-29, 01:31 authored by Amber Gorrell
The wellbeing and workload of school principals has been an issue of escalating prominence both in Australia and internationally. Recent data in relation to principal stress, health and burnout, and the adverse consequences this has for schooling systems, demonstrates that this is an area needing attention. This qualitative study investigated the social support New South Wales primary school principals receive and how this may influence their wellbeing. Given that social support has demonstrated positive effects on wellbeing in general, but that limited research has been completed in regard to how principals experience social support from their staff, this study s ought to explore upward support as a means to improve principal wellbeing. Eight primary school principals participated in semi - structured interviews to examine their experiences of this phenomenon. The themes that emerged from the interview data centred on motivation; wellbeing; and experiences and impacts of support. The findings suggest that social support can promote wellbeing and highlight concerns of principals; barriers to principals receiving support from their staff; and the type of support principals require to improve their wellbeing. The implications of the se findings for practice are discussed.


Table of Contents

Chapter 1. Introduction -- Chapter 2. Literature review -- Chapter 3. Method -- Chapter 4. Findings -- Chapter 6. Discussion -- Chapter 6. Conclusion.


Theoretical thesis. Bibliography: pages 82-92

Awarding Institution

Macquarie University

Degree Type

Thesis MRes


MRes, Macquarie University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Educational Studies

Department, Centre or School

Department of Educational Studies

Year of Award


Principal Supervisor

John De Nobile

Additional Supervisor 1

Ian Hay


Copyright Amber Gorrell 2019. Copyright disclaimer:




1 online resource (98 pages)

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