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Abstract

This study was conducted to evaluate the relationships among work stress, nonwork stress, locus of control, social support, and head nurses' psychological symptoms. Data were collected from head nurses (N = 300) representing all Army hospitals in the United States; 21% of the volunteer sample were men. The results supported the hypotheses that perceived stress from both work and nonwork sources was positively related to psychological symptoms. Direct effects for both internal locus of control and social support, while weak, were manifest as expected; these variables demonstrated a negative relationship with psychological symptoms. None of the hypothesized buffering effects were detected. The stress model derived from this study accounted for 35.9% of the variance in psychological symptoms. Regardless of gender, the head nurses' psychological symptoms were one standard deviation higher than nonpatient norms.