Date of this Version

January 1999

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Details

Seib, Belinda & Muller, Juanita (1999) The effect of different work schedules on role strain of Australian working mothers: a pilot study. Journal of Applied Health Behaviour, v.1, no.2, pp.9-15
Reproduced with the kind permission of The Journal of Applied Health Behaviour ┬ęSchool of Social Science, Queensland University of Technology, 1999.


Flexible work schedules, such as part-time, jobsharing, and flexitime, have been identified in the literature as beneficial in reducing levels of role strain in working mothers. Role strain is the perceived difficulty in achieving role obligations and has been related to negative psychological and physical effects. Forty-four Australian working mothers from Commonwealth Government agencies completed scales to determine levels of role strain and family management in relation to their work schedules. Analyses indicated that mothers in the job-share option (n = 6) experienced significantly lower levels of role strain and greater ease in managing the family role followed by mothers in the part-time option (n = 12), flexitime option (n = 14) and fixll-time option (n = 12) respectively. A negative relationship between role strain and family management was also found. Implications, limitations and areas for further research are discussed,