Sign Up to Receive PHI Alerts

Who Thrives as a Direct Support Professional? Personal Motivation and Resilience in Direct Support

Journal Article Expanding Access & Cultural Competence
August 15, 2020

Direct support professionals (DSPs) are an essential part of the lives of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD). Occupational stress and burnout are common experiences among DSPs—but other DSPs remain motivated by and successful in the profession. This study used sensitivity theory to examine the relationships between motivation and outcome measures relevant to DSP success, namely vocational strain, depersonalization, and personal accomplishment.

Key Takeaways

Occupational stress and burnout are common experiences among direct support professionals (DSPs).
Family, citizenship, and social contact were all positive motivators for DSPs in this research.
The findings from this research have relevance for DSP recruitment and training.

Caring for the Future

Our new policy report takes an extensive look at today's direct care workforce—in five installments.

Workforce Data Center

From wages to employment statistics, find the latest data on the direct care workforce.