Date of Award




Document Type

Master's Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


Department of Psychology


Industrial/Organizational Psychology

Content Description

1 online resource (ii, 44 pages) : illustrations

Dissertation/Thesis Chair

Jason G Randall

Committee Members

Sylvia Gabriele Roch


coworker interruption, coworker satisfaction, coworker support, job satisfaction, work interruption, Quality of work life, Job satisfaction, Job stress, Interpersonal communication

Subject Categories



Although being interrupted by a colleague at work is often a negative experience, in this study I ask the question of whether the impact of the interruption depends on the relationship you have with that coworker. This is important because coworker support may protect employees from the negative effects of work interruptions on employee well-being. In this study, I administered a survey to investigate the role of coworker support in the relationship between general work interruption and job satisfaction. Using an experimental vignette method, 181 participants (college students) were presented with scenarios with a fictional co-worker that presented either high or low levels of coworker interruption crossed with high or low levels of coworker support and then self-reported perceptions of coworker satisfaction. No main effect of general work interruption was found on job satisfaction. There were significant positive main effects of coworker support on job satisfaction and coworker satisfaction; however, I detected no interactions between work interruptions and coworker support, as expected. These findings fail to support the idea that work interruptions are harmful to employees' well-being, and subsequently, that any harm from interruptions would be buffered by coworker support. Nonetheless, these results emphasize the importance of coworker support for employee well-being and present some interesting directions for future research.

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