Research article


Asmaa Abdelnasser, Engy Abdelaziz, Hawraa Alsayrafi, Sarah Alamri, Adebah Khan, Sara Alharbi, Hanan Abdullah Alterazi

Online First: January 28, 2024

Background: Burnout is a psychological syndrome that is considered to be a combination of exhaustion, cynicism, and inefficacy, commonly resulting from unmanaged chronic academic stress. Student engagement is defined as a positive state of mind in terms of acquiring knowledge. Students who are engaged and contribute to their learning environment are more resilient to academic stress. Effective stress management, supportive environments, and a sense of purpose in one's work or studies can play crucial roles in promoting well-being and preventing burnout. Additionally, fostering a positive and engaging learning environment can contribute to higher levels of student engagement and overall satisfaction with the educational experience. Aim: The study aimed to explore the relationship between medical students’ academic engagement and burnout levels in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. Subjects and Methods: 405 students from the second to the sixth year at different private and governmental medical schools in Jeddah participated voluntarily in this study. The Utrecht Work Engagement Scale–Student Survey (UWES–S) was used to assess the level of student engagement while the Maslach Burnout Inventory–Student Survey (MBI–SS) was used to measure the extent of burnout syndrome among medical students. Results: With regards to the Utrecht Work Engagement Scale–Student Survey (UWES–SS), a significant number of study participants achieved high scores across various subthemes. 94.6 % of students scored in the high mean score more than 60% of the total of the UWES–SS. The Maslach Burnout Inventory (MBI) provided a distribution of scores across the three MBI subthemes. In the Exhaustion (EX) subtheme, the percentage of students experiencing high levels of exhaustion was notably higher in preclinical years (48.3%) compared to clinical years (40.8%). Overall, student engagement levels were negatively correlated with burnout levels. Conclusion: A majority of the study population exhibited elevated levels of burnout. However, a notable conclusion was revealed as there was a discernible decrease in the burnout level of clinical years’ students who had an increased engagement level. This underscores the significance of bolstering engagement as a means of preventing burnout.


Burnout, Medical students, Student Engagement, preclinical years, clinical years