|Year : 2011 | Volume
| Issue : 1 | Page : 1-7
Academic job satisfaction questionnaire: Construction and validation in Saudi Arabia
Abdullah M Al-Rubaish1, Sheikh Idris A Rahim2, Mahdi S Abumadini2, Lade Wosornu3
1 Department of Internal Medicine and President, University of Dammam, Dammam, Saudi Arabia
2 Department of Psychiatry, College of Medicine, University of Dammam, Dammam, Saudi Arabia
3 Department of Surgery & Deanship of Quality & Academic Accreditation, University of Dammam, Dammam, Saudi Arabia
|Date of Web Publication||5-Apr-2011|
Sheikh Idris A Rahim
College of Medicine, University of Dammam, PO Box 40101, Al-Khobar-31952
| Abstract|| |
Background: Colleges and universities are becoming increasingly accountable for teaching outcomes in order to meet rigorous accreditation standards. Job satisfaction (JS) seems more difficult to measure in the academic field in view of the complexity of roles, duties and responsibilities. Objectives: To compile and determine the psychometric properties of a proposed Academic Job Satisfaction Questionnaire (AJSQ) suitable for university faculty, and amenable to future upgrading. Materials and Methods: A 46-item five-option Likert-type draft questionnaire on JS was distributed for anonymous self-reporting by all the academic staff of five colleges in University of Dammam (n=340). The outcome measures were (1) factor analysis of the questionnaire items, (2) intra-factor α-Coefficient of Internal Consistency Reliability, (3) inter-factor correlations, (4) comparison of psychometric properties in separately analyzed main faculty subgroups. Results: The response rate was 72.9 percent. Factor analysis extracted eight factors which conjointly explained 60.3 percent of the variance in JS. These factors, in descending order of eigenvalue, were labeled "Authority", "Supervision", "Policies and Facilities", "My Work Itself", "Interpersonal Relationships", "Commitment", "Salary" and "Workload". Cronbach's-α ranged from 0.90 in "Supervision" to 0.63 in "Salary" and "Workload". All inter-factor correlations were positive and significant, ranging from 0.65 to 0.23. The psychometric properties of the instrument in separately analyzed subgroups divided by sex, nationality, college and clinical duties produced fairly comparable findings. Conclusion: The AJSQ demonstrated good overall psychometric properties in terms of construct validity and internal consistency reliability in both the overall sample and its separately analyzed subgroups. Recommendation: To replicate these findings in larger multicenter samples of academic staff.
Keywords: Academic faculty, accreditation, job satisfaction, job questionnaire, Saudi Arabia
|How to cite this article:|
Al-Rubaish AM, Rahim SA, Abumadini MS, Wosornu L. Academic job satisfaction questionnaire: Construction and validation in Saudi Arabia. J Fam Community Med 2011;18:1-7
|How to cite this URL:|
Al-Rubaish AM, Rahim SA, Abumadini MS, Wosornu L. Academic job satisfaction questionnaire: Construction and validation in Saudi Arabia. J Fam Community Med [serial online] 2011 [cited 2013 May 24];18:1-7. Available from: http://www.jfcmonline.com/text.asp?2011/18/1/1/78630
| Introduction|| |
About one-third of human adult life is spent in breadwinning activities. But, work is more than a mere means of subsistence. It bestows on one a personal identity, self-actualization and social image. Some theorists conceptualize job satisfaction (JS) as the positive emotional reactions and attitudes toward one's job.  Others emphasize its role as a major determinant of overall wellbeing.  The association of job dissatisfaction with burnout,  absenteeism,  and turnover,  makes it a main concern for employees, employers and human resource agencies.
The literature abounds in studies on JS. Different instruments have been developed. Some are single-item measures,  others have varying numbers of items. ,,, Some of the latter are further subdivided into subscales or domains varying from 2 to 20.  Others view it as a multidimensional construct of intrinsic and extrinsic components,  or of many more dimensions.  Varied as they are, each of these instruments claims superiority in judging JS.
Most popular among these instruments include the Minnesota Satisfaction Questionnaire (MSQ),  Job Descriptive Index (JDI),  Job in General Scale (JIG),  Job Satisfaction Survey (JSS),  Warr Job Satisfaction Questionnaire (WJSQ)  and Measure of Job Satisfaction (MJS). 
Some of the original versions proved too lengthy for routine surveys. For example, the proprietors of MSQ  developed a 20-item 'Short Form' as an alternative to their original 100-item 'Long Form'. Likewise, the proprietors of JDI  developed an 'Abridged' 25-item version (AJDI), marketed in the same package with the original 72-item JDI. In both cases, the short version demonstrated psychometric power comparable to the long version.
Indecision as to which to choose from a plethora of such instruments motivated many newcomers to develop their own instruments. 
In a country such as Saudi Arabia, relatively few studies have addressed JS. Most are on nurses, ,,,,,, fewer on primary care physicians, , and, one is on 'senior staff of a big oil company'.  We were unable to trace any local study on JS among academic staff.
Despite the sizable literature on JS of academic staff, most studies have employed relatively generic all-purpose instruments. ,,,,,,, These "instruments were developed and originally worded to reflect the job of an hourly-paid worker rather than a salaried professional". 
Developing JS measures specifically tailored for academic staff has become a pressing need in the face of increasing accountability for teaching outcomes to meet accreditation standards. 
The purpose of the present study was to develop and validate a self-administered Academic Job Satisfaction Questionnaire (AJSQ) suitable for university faculty, and, hopefully applicable to related professions. Specifically, we aimed at assessing the instrument's psychometric properties in terms of factor structure and internal consistency, as well as inter-item and inter-factor correlations.
| Materials and Methods|| |
The study design was that of a whole population cross-sectional survey. The target population was all the academic faculty of the five colleges of the University of Dammam [U0D]. The primary dependent measure was the overall level of JS. The assessment tool was a fully structured multi-item self-administered questionnaire. The outcome target was the psychometric properties of a proposed AJSQ.
The impetus for this present study was a directive from the National Commission for Academic Accreditation and Assessment (NCAAA), prompting the development of academic assessment tools including staff JS rates. This stimulated a process of extensive scanning of the literature, scrutiny of existing JS measures, ,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, as well as expert panels and focus group deliberations.
The outcome was a fully structured draft questionnaire composed of two parts. The first part contained basic demographic and professional data including sex, age, nationality, academic degrees, college, department and duration of service at the University. The second part contained 46 items, one of which was an overall judgment about one's own JS, and the remaining items subdivided into eleven putative JS domains.
Each item required a 5-option Likert-type response coded from 1 to 5 according whether it was "Strongly Disagree", "Disagree", "Neutral", "Agree", or "Strongly Agree" respectively. The questionnaire was dispatched by internal college mail to each faculty member for anonymous self-administration.
A total of 248 of all the 340 academic staff of U0D returned their completed questionnaires making a response rate of 72.9 percent. The responders were 62.2 percent males, 61.5 percent expatriates, 26.1 percent below age 44, and, 37.3 percent above 50. By academic titles, 17.8 percent were professors, 27.6 percent associates, and 54.6 percent assistants. By duration of service in U0D, 36.0 percent were less than 5 years and 38.1 percent were more than 10 years. By colleges, 60.5 percent were from the College of Medicine, 13.6 percent Nursing, 10.9 percent Applied Sciences, 8.1 percent Architecture and 6.9 percent Dentistry.
Five measures were to be estimated: (1) The correlation matrix of all questionnaire items, (2) the overall factor structure of the instrument, (3) the Cronbach's α-coefficient of internal consistency reliability within each factor, (4) the pair-wise inter-factor correlations, and (5) the foregoing psychometric properties within separately analyzed faculty subgroups.
Data entry and data analysis used SPSS for Windows Version 16.  The initial Exploratory Factor Analysis was conducted on default options. The tailored subsequent Confirmatory Factor Analysis interchangeably used Principal Component Analysis and α-Factoring with Varimax Rotation, minimum 1.0 eigenvalue for factor extraction, minimum 0.35 for item-to-factor loading and 25 iterations.
The within-factor internal consistency was tested with Cronbach's α-coefficient. The correlation matrix and the pair-wise inter-factor correlations used Pearson's correlation coefficient. The data analysis of JS indices in separate faculty subgroups followed the same statistical procedures as for the whole faculty sample.
| Results|| |
[Table 1] displays the factor structure of the emerging AJSQ. Eight factors had been extracted. Conjointly, they accommodated 45 out of the initially introduced 46 items. The singularly rejected item had failed to achieve the set minimum of 0.35 loading to any factor. Two factors contained nine items each, three factors contained five each, and the remaining three factors contained four each. Factor 1 alone contributed half the 60.3 percent overall explained variance. The remaining seven factors explained from 6.80 to 2.97 percent each.
[Table 2] shows that the overall internal consistency reliability as tested by Cronbach's α-coefficient was 0.76, ranging in descending order from 0.90 in Factor 2 ("Supervision") to as 0.63 in each of Factors 7 and 8 ("Salary" and "Workload", respectively).
[Table 3] shows that all the pair-wise factor-factor correlations were significantly positive. The strongest of these correlations was between "Interpersonal Relationship" and "My Work Itself", and the weakest was between "Salary" and "Commitment".
The correlation between the questionnaire's overall JS item and the mean score of all the other 45 items was + 0.7134 (P<0.001).
[Table 4] provides the main psychometric properties of the instrument in separately analyzed major faculty subgroups. The overall explained variance of 60.3 percent ranged among subgroups from 56.3 percent in females, to 62.9 percent in expatriates (P<0.05). Comparing subgroup counterparts, explained variance was higher in males than in females, in expatriates than in nationals, in medical than in non-medical, and in clinical than in non-clinical faculty. The overall α-coefficients of internal consistency reliability ranged from 0.70 in non-clinical to 0.91 in non-clinical faculty (P<0.001). The [Table 4] displays the detailed α-values within each factor for each faculty subgroup. The highest one was 0.95 in factor 5 of the clinical subgroup, and the lowest was 0.61 in factor 8 of the expatriate group (P< 0.001).
|Table 4: Psychometric properties in separately analyzed staff subgroups |
Click here to view
| Discussion|| |
The present study has achieved its main objective, namely validating an AJSQ. The initial face validity and content validity have been confirmed by the construct validity generated from factor analysis. The internal consistency reliability of the extracted factors has been ascertained by Cronbach's α-coefficients. The integrity of the instrument as a whole has been demonstrated by the invariably positive and significant inter-factor correlations. The consistency of the instrument across separately analyzed faculty subgroups supports its applicability in various academic settings.
Most of our reported psychometric indices compare favorably with published studies. Our response rate of 72.9 percent is considerably higher than the average of 56 percent drawn from 27 different studies where it ranged from 39.0  to 87.2 percent.  The number of 46 items in our instrument is intermediate among the reported range of 13  to100.  The number of eight extracted factors is modal among reported range of 3  to 11  factors. The explained variance of 60.3 percent is exceeded by only one out of 13 studies ranging in variance from 44  to 68 percent.  Our within factor α-coefficients ranging from 0.63 to 0.90 were intermediate among 25 other studies in which the range reported was from 0.43  to 0.90.  These comparisons justify recommending this AJSQ for use in various academic settings.
Future studies are needed to identify and incorporate some hitherto unoperationalized determinants of JS. For, irrespective of whichever JS instrument is being used, 32-56 percent of the overall variance in JS remains unexplained. , This might be partly the result of inadequate coverage of important job aspects, yet a major part of this effect might be caused by extra-job factors.  It was claimed that personality factors explain 44-58 percent of the variance in JS. , Other authors implicated work-family conflicts, , demographic characteristics and health state or spiritual involvement. ,
The foregoing calls for the development of a new generation of JS instruments variably tailored to fit specified professional groups and sensitive to prevailing extra-job influences. These issues constitute an agenda for further qualitative and quantitative investigations aiming to consolidate and upgrade of the present draft of our AJSQ.
| Conclusions|| |
The study successfully developed and validated a JS questionnaire suitable for academic staff in colleges and specialties. The following five attributes make AJSQ strongly commendable for the investigation of the state of JS in various academic settings. They are the explained variance of 60.3 percent, the overall 0.78 α-coefficient of internal consistency reliability, the invariably positive and significant inter-factor correlations, and the stability of the psychometric properties in separately analyzed faculty subgroups. Planned qualitative and quantitative investigations are envisaged to confirm and upgrade the obtained results.
The total study population of 340 academic faculty was rather modest. The response rate of 72.9 percent, though higher than in most retrievable studies, might not have been unbiased. Self-reporting of 'satisfaction' is essentially a subjective appraisal amenable to extraneous influences rather than an independent objective judgment. Although, these reservations apply to all studies on JS, they should not be ignored when evaluating the observed findings.
| Acknowledgments|| |
The authors thank the deans, vice-deans and chairpersons of the departments in all the five colleges for their help in data collection and in related logistics pertaining to the present study. Special thanks go to all faculty members who readily completed and returned the questionnaires. We are also indebted to Margilyn Ungson and Jess Asilo for their enthusiastic secretarial and logistic services.
| References|| |
|1.||Oshagbemi T. Overall job satisfaction: How good are single vs. multiple-item measures? J Managerial Psychol 1999;14:388-403. |
|2.||Vallerand RJ. Toward a hierarchical model of intrinsic and extrinsic motivation. In: Zanna MP, editor. Advances in experimental social psychology, 29. San Diego: Academic Press; 1997. p. 271-360. |
|3.||Espeland KE. Overcoming burnout: How to revitalize your career. J Contin Med Educ Nurs 2006;37:178-84. |
|4.||Hackett RD, Guion RM. A reevaluation of the absenteeism-job satisfaction relationship. Organ Behav Hum Decis. Process 1985;35:340-81. |
|5.||GauciBorda E, Norman IJ. Factors influencing turnover and absence in nurses: A research review. Int J Nurs Stud 1997;34:385-94. |
|6.||Kunin T. The construction of a new type of attitude measure. Pers Psychol 1955;8:65-77. |
|7.||Hackman JR, Oldham GR. Development of the Job Diagnostic Survey. J Appl Psychol 1975;60:159-70. |
|8.||Weiss DJ, Dawis RV, England GW, LofquistL H. Manual of the Minnesota Satisfaction Questionnaire. Industrial Relations Center Bulletin 45, 1977. Minnesota Studies in Vocational Rehabilitation 22. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota. |
|9.||Spector PE. Job Satisfaction: Application, Assessment, Causes, and Consequences. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications; 1997. |
|10.||Smith PC. Summary Report on the Job-in-General scale of the JDI. Bowling Green OH: Bowling Green University Department of Psychology. |
|11.||Herzberg F. One more time: How do you motivate employees? 1968. Harv Bus Rev 2003;81:87-96. |
|12.||Kalleberg A. Work values and job rewards: A theory of job satisfaction. Am Sociol Rev 1977;42:124-43. |
|13.||Smith PC, Kendall LM, Hulin CL. Measurement of Satisfaction in Work and Retirement. Chicago, IL: Rand McNally; 1969. |
|14.||Ironson GH, Smith PC, Brannick MT, Gibson WM, Paul KB. Constitution of a Job in General Scale: A Comparison of Global Composite, and Specific Measures. J Appl Psychol 1989;74:193-200. |
|15.||Warr P. The measurement of wellbeing and other aspects of mental health. J Occup Psychol 1990;63:193-210. |
|16.||Traynor M, Wade B. The development of a measure of job satisfaction for use in monitoring the morale of community nurses in four trusts. J Adv Nurs 1993;18:127-36. |
|17.||Mosadeghrad AM, Ferlie E, Rosenberg D. A study of the relationship between job satisfaction, organizational commitment, and turnover intention among hospital employees. Health Serv Manag Res 2007;21:211-27. |
|18.||Badawy YA, Essawy MA. Influence of job characteristicson job satisfaction of pediatric nurses. J Egypt Public Health Assoc 1992;67:403-17. |
|19.||Al-Aemeri AS. Job satisfaction and organizational commitment for nurses. Saudi Med J 2000;21: 531-5. |
|20.||Al-Ahmadi HA. Job satisfaction of nurses in the Ministry of Health Hospitals in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Saud Med J 2002;23:645-50. |
|21.||El-Gilany A, Al-Wehady A. Job satisfaction of female Saudi nurses. East Mediterr Health J 2001;7:31-7. |
|22.||Al-Aameri AS. Source of job stress for nurses in public hospitals. Saudi Med J 2003;24:1183-7. |
|23.||Al-Ahmadi H. Factors affecting performance of hospital nurses in Riyadh Region, Saudi Arabia. Int J Health Care Qual Assur 2009;22:4054. |
|24.||Al Juhani AM, Kishk NA. Job satisfaction among primary health care physicians and nurses in Al-madinah Al-munawwara. J Egypt Health Assoc 2006;81:165-80. |
|25.||Kalantan KA, Al-Taweel AA, Abdul Ghani H. Factors influencing job satisfaction among primary health care (PHC) physicians in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Ann Saud Med 1999;19:424-6. |
|26.||Maghrabi AS, Johnson DA. An Arabic version of the Revised Job Descriptive Index. Curr Psychol 1995;14:47-53. |
|27.||Conklin MH, Desselle SP. Development of a multidimensional scale to measure work satisfaction among pharmacy faculty members. Am J Pharmaceutical Educ 2007;71:61. |
|28.||Eng JL, Trinca CE. Greduate education in pharmacy: Issues, trends, and opportunities. J Pharm Pract 1990;3:121-7. |
|29.||Kinnear PR, Gray CD. SPSS for Windows Made Simple. 3 rd Ed. East Sussex, UK: Psychology Press Limited; 1999. |
|30.||Lynn MR, Morgan JC, Moore KA. Development and testing of the Satisfaction in Nursing Scale. Nurs Res 2009;58:166-74. |
|31.||Zangaro GA, Johantgen M. Registered nurses' job satisfaction in Navy hospitals. Mil Med 2009;174:78-81. |
|32.||Wolosin RJ, Gesell SB, Taber B, Epting GJ. Construct validation of a physician satisfaction survey. J Healthc Qual 2006;28:10-21. |
|33.||Li J, Yang W, Liu P, Xu Z, Cho SI. Psychometric evaluation of the Chinese (mainland) version of Job Content Questionnaire: A study in university hospitals. Ind Health 2004;42:260-7. |
|34.||Lloyd S, Streiner D, Hahn E, Shannon S. Development of the emergency physician job satisfaction measurement instrument. Am J Emerg Med 1994;12:1-10. |
|35.||García-Peña MC, Reyes-Lagunes I, Reyes-Frausto S, Villa-Contreras S, Libreros-Bango V, Munõz Hernández O. Development and validation of an inventory for measuring job satisfaction among family physicians. Psychol Rep 1996;79:291-301. |
|36.||Soo Hoo WE, Ramer L. Development of the physician satisfaction survey instrument. J Healthc Qual 1998;20:34-8. |
|37.||Li W, Zhang JQ, Sun J, Tan PF, Wang S. Reliability and validity of Job Content Questionnaire in Chinese petrochemical employees. Psychol Rep 2007;100:35-46. |
|38.||Beasley BW, Kern DE, Howard DM, Kolodner K. A job-satisfaction measure for internal medicine residency program directors. Acad Med 1999;74:263-70. |
|39.||Nair KV, Gaither CA. Effects of work, non-work, and role conflict on the overall life satisfaction of pharmacy faculty. Am J Pharm Educ 1999;63:1-12. |
|40.||Judge TA, Heller D, Mount MK. Five-factor model of personality and job satisfaction: A meta-analysis. J Appl Psychol 2002;87:530-41. |
|41.||Tziner A, Waismal-Manor R, Vardi N, Brodman A. The personality dispositional approach to job satisfaction and organizational commitment. Psychol Rep 2008;103:435-42. |
|42.||Gottlieb BH, Kelloway EK, Martin-Matthews A. Predictors of work-family conflicts, stress, and job satisfaction among nurses. Can J Nurs Res 1996;28:99-117. |
|43.||Patel CJ, Beekham A, Paruk Z, Ramgoon S. Work-family conflict, job satisfaction and spousal support: An exploratory study of nurses' experience. Curationis 2008;31:38-44. |
|44.||Curtis EA. The effects of biographical variables on job satisfaction among nurses. Br J Nurs 2008;17:174-80. |
|45.||Rahim A. Demographic variables in general job satisfaction in a hospital: A multivariate study. Percept Mot Skills 1982;55:711-9. |
[Table 1], [Table 2], [Table 3], [Table 4]