Occupational stress management: Evaluation of stress management training in occupational contexts

Project leader: Petra Wirtz, Ulrike Ehlert
Project duration: 03.2004 – 03.2006
Funding: University of Zurich

The project evaluated the stress-reducing effects of cognitive-behavioural stress management training in occupational contexts. The participants were individuals in active employment relationships (staff members of a German company managing health insurance for employees). For evaluation purposes, the participants underwent a standardised psychosocial stress situation both before and after receiving training. The stress reaction was recorded using stress-relevant psychological and physiological parameters. The subjects’ cognitive evaluation of the stress situation was recorded as one psychological variable among others. Recorded physiological variables included the stress hormone cortisol before, during and after the stress situation, as well as blood pressure and heart rate. The project especially sought to find out if stress training can change the cognitive evaluation of stress situations and if this is accompanied by reduced physiological stress reactivity.