Christina Maslach

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Christina Maslach
Christina Maslach portrait2.jpg
Born (1946-01-21) January 21, 1946 (age 77)
Alma materRadcliffe College (AB)
Stanford University (PhD)
Occupation(s)Psychologist, psychology professor
Known forStopping the Stanford prison experiment
SpousePhilip Zimbardo

Christina Maslach (born January 21, 1946)[1] is an American social psychologist and professor emerita of psychology at the University of California, Berkeley,[2] known for her research on occupational burnout.[3] She is a co-author of the Maslach Burnout Inventory[4] and Areas of Worklife Survey.[5] Early in her professional career, Maslach was instrumental in stopping the Stanford prison experiment.[6] In 1997, she was awarded the U.S. Professor of the Year.

Education and career[edit]

Maslach graduated from Radcliffe College (1967) and earned a Ph.D. in Psychology at Stanford University (1971).[7] After receiving her Ph.D., Maslach joined the psychology department at Berkeley as an assistant professor.[2]

Her critique of the Stanford prison experiment persuaded investigator Philip Zimbardo (later her husband) to stop the experiment after only six days.[6] The experience also shaped Maslach's later career, particularly her interest in occupational burnout[8] as a response to unavoidable stress.[9]

In 1981, Maslach and Susan E. Jackson authored the Maslach Burnout Inventory (MBI) to assess an individual's experience of occupational burnout in human services settings.[4] She later developed alternative versions of the original MBI to be used to assess education settings (1986) and general occupational settings (1996).[10] More than 30 years later, in 2014, Maslach Burnout Inventory was still being cited as "the mainstream measure for burnout."[11]

From 1988 to 1989, she was President of the Western Psychological Association (WPA). Since 2001, she has been Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education at the University of California, Berkeley.[7]

Awards and honors[edit]

In 1991, Maslach was elected a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. She is also a Fellow of the American Psychological Association[7] and of the WPA.[12]

At Berkeley, Maslach has received the Distinguished Teaching Award and the Social Sciences Service Award.[13] In 1997, she was named the U.S. Professor of the Year by the Council for Advancement and Support of Education and the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching in 1997.[14] In 2008, Maslach won the WPA Outstanding Teaching Award.[12]


  1. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2020-09-03. Retrieved 2017-09-27.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  2. ^ a b Worth, Katie. "When Scientists Are Mad about Each Other". Scientific American. Retrieved 2018-01-05. In lectures they frequently discuss the moment when Maslach argued with Zimbardo in the parking lot, which Zimbardo describes as an act of heroism, because she stood up for her principles even though she knew the consequence might be losing his and his colleagues' approval—and ending a relationship she cared about.
  3. ^ Scott Plous. "Christina Maslach". Retrieved 2012-06-27.
  4. ^ a b Maslach, C.; Jackson, S.E. (1981). "The measurement of experienced burnout". Journal of Occupational Behavior, 2, 99–113.
  5. ^ Leiter, M.P; Maslach, C. (1999). "Six areas of worklife: A model of the organizational context of burnout". Journal of Health and Human Resources Administration, 21, 472–489.
  6. ^ a b "The Stanford Prison Experiment: Still powerful after all these years (1/97)". 1996-08-12. Retrieved 2018-07-12. Maslach walked into the mock prison on the evening of the fifth day. Having just received her doctorate from Stanford and starting an assistant professorship at Berkeley, she had agreed to do subject interviews the next day and had come down the night before to familiarize herself with the experiment.
  7. ^ a b c Curriculum vitae Archived 2012-08-23 at the Wayback Machine, retrieved 2012-06-22.
  8. ^ "Signs of Job Burnout". Spark Podcast. Retrieved 2020-10-22.
  9. ^ Ratnasar, Romesh (2011). "The Menace Within". Stanford Alumni Magazine. Retrieved July 12, 2018. The clearest influence the study had on me was that it raised some really serious questions about how people cope with extremely emotional, difficult situations, especially when it's part of their job—when they have to manage people or take care of them or rehabilitate them. So I started interviewing people. I started with some prison guards in a real prison, and talked to them about their jobs and how they understood what they were doing...I interviewed people who worked in hospitals, in the ER. After a while I realized there was a rhythm and pattern emerging, and when I described it to someone they said, "I don't know what it's called in other professions, but in our occupation we call it 'burnout.'
  10. ^ Maslach, C.; Jackson, S.E.; Leiter, M.P. (1996–2016). Maslach Burnout Inventory Manual (Fourth Edition). Menlo Park, CA: Mind Garden, Inc.
  11. ^ Loera, Barbara (December 12, 2004). "Evaluating the Psychometric Properties of the Maslach Burnout Inventory-Human Services Survey (MBI-HSS) among Italian Nurses: How Many Factors Must a Researcher Consider?". PLOS ONE. 9 (12): e114987. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0114987. PMC 4264862. PMID 25501716. S2CID 4583719. The Maslach Burnout Inventory (MBI) is the mainstream measure for burnout.
  12. ^ a b Program for 88th Convention of the WPA, 2008 Archived 2010-07-15 at the Wayback Machine, retrieved 2012-06-25.
  13. ^ "Christina Maslach". University of California, Berkeley. Retrieved May 24, 2014.
  14. ^ McBroom, Pat. "UC Berkeley professor of psychology, Christina Maslach, is chosen to be U.S. Professor of the Year by CASE". University of California, Berkeley. Retrieved May 24, 2014.

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