Carson’s academic scholarship has focused on the psychological processes of teachers. His initial research examined the theoretical and conceptual underpinnings of physical education teacher motivation. He has extended this work to all teachers, and is particularly interested in understanding the linkage between teachers’ daily emotional encounters, on-the-job performance, and overall burnout. A unique aspect of his research is the incorporation of mixed methodologies (Ecological Momentary Assessment, psychometric inventories, focus groups, individual interviews), real-time technologies (i.e., Personal Digital Assistants), and multilevel modeling techniques. He has since established a collaborative relationship with leading emotional literacy scientists who together are developing the Teacher Emotional Regulation Scale (TERS). After the wake of hurricane Katrina, a tangential research line emerged for Carson relative to service-learning and the impact it has on preservice teachers. More recently, he has taken a lead role with colleagues from around the country and the National Association for Sport and Physical Education (NASPE) to develop programs to assist physical educators in the delivery of comprehensive school-based physical activity programs (CSPAP). Besides his scholarly achievements, Carson’s dedication to his students and personal pedagogy is unyielding. Whether it was teaching/coaching international secondary students in Rome, Italy, supervising student teachers at both the elementary and secondary levels, or now teaching instructional methods, curriculum design, sport psychology, and stress management courses to undergraduate and graduate students alike, Carson is a deeply committed to experience-driven education. Since 2005, he has designed and implemented three service-learning programs for K-12 youth in need (i.e., displaced by hurricane Katrina). In 2008 and 2009, he was honored for his extraordinary teaching and service contributions to his local community. Carson has also directed two 3-week academic summer abroad programs at LSU (Italy, 2008; New Zealand, 2010). Carson is an active and leading member of the American Educational Research Association (AERA), the American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation & Dance (AAHPERD), and the Louisiana AHPERD (LAHPERD), serving in major roles such as chair and program chair. He has also served as a guest reviewer for top research journals in education and physical education. Carson was awarded the 2010 Taylor Dodson Young Professional Award from LAHPERD, the 2011 Mabel Lee College/University award from AAHPERD, and the 2012 Helen M. Heitmann Curriculum and Instruction Young Scholar award for his accomplishments across his scholarship, teaching and service.
Please visit: Physical and Emotional Literacy (PEL) Lab
Carson, R. L., Plemmons, S., Templin, T. J., & Weiss, H. M. (2011). “You are who you are:” a mixed method study of affectivity and emotional regulation in curbing teacher burnout. In G. S. Gates & W. H. Gmelch (Series Eds.) & G. M. Reevy & E. Frydenberg (Vol. Eds.), Research on stress and coping in education: Vol. 6. Personality, stress and coping: Implications for education (pp. 239-265). Charlotte, NC: Information Age Publishing.
Barber, L. K., Grawitch, M. J., Carson, R. L., & *Tsouloupas, C. N. (2011). Costs and benefits of supportive versus disciplinary emotion regulation in teachers. Stress and Health, 27(3), e173-e187.
Carson, R. L., Baumgartner, J. J., Matthews, R. A., & *Tsouloupas, C. N. (2010). Emotional exhaustion, absenteeism, and turnover intentions in childcare teachers: Examining the impact of physical activity behaviors. Journal of Health Psychology, 15(6), 905-914. doi: 10.1177/1359105309360697
Carson, R. L., Weiss, H. M., & Templin, T. J. (2010). Ecological momentary assessment: a research method for studying the daily lives of teachers. International Journal of Research & Method in Education, 33(2), 165-182. doi: 10.1080/1743727X.2010.484548
Harrison, L., Jr., Carson, R. L., & Burden, J., Jr. (2010). Physical education teachers’ cultural competency. Journal of Teaching in Physical Education, 29(2), 184-198.
*Tsouloupas, C. N., Carson, R. L., Matthews, R. A., Grawitch, M. J., & Barber, L. K. (2010). Exploring the association between teachers’ perceived student misbehaviour and emotional exhaustion: the importance of teacher efficacy beliefs and emotional regulation. Educational Psychology, 30(2), 173-189. doi: 10.1080/01443410903494460
Heidorn, B. D., Hall, T. J., & Carson, R. L. (2010). Comprehensive school-based physical activity program [Theory into Practice]. Strategies, 24(2), 33-35.
Baumgartner, J. J., Carson, R. L., Apavaloaie, L., & *Tsouloupas, C. (2009). Unveiling common stressful factors and coping strategies among childcare providers. Child and Youth Care Forum, 38(5), 239-251. doi: 10.1007/s10566-009-9079-5
Carson, R. L., & Chase, M. A. (2009). An examination of physical education teacher motivation from a self-determination theoretical framework. Physical Education and Sport Pedagogy, 14(4), 335-353. doi: 10.1080/17408980802301866
Carson, R. L. (2009). “I have very little left to give”: Understanding the emotional experiences of teachers and teacher burnout. In L. Housner, M. Metzler, P. Schempp, & T. Templin (Eds.), Historic traditions and future directions in research on teaching and teacher education in physical education (pp. 237-245). Morgantown, WV: Fitness Information Technology.
Carson, R. L., Templin, T. J., Weiss, H. M., & Plemmons, S. (2011, April). The importance of positivity and emotional regulation in extinguishing burnout. In E. Frydenberg (Ed.), Positive psychology: The contribution of personality and coping. Symposium conducted at the annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association, New Orleans, LA.
Dodge, A., Carson, R. L., Reyes, M. R.., & Brackett, M. A. (2011, April). Recently tenured, emotionally exhausted: the career stage-burnout nexus. Paper discussed (roundtable) at the annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association, New Orleans, LA.
*Tsouloupas, C. N. & Carson, R. L. (2011, April). Personal and school cultural factors associated with teachers’ efficacy in handling student misbehavior. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association, New Orleans, LA.
Carson, R. L., Barber, L. K., Grawitch, M. J., & *Tsouloupas, C. N. (2010, May). Comparing burnout, job involvement and coping strategies across primary and secondary public school teachers. In C. J. McCarthy (Ed.), International Perspectives on Teacher and Student Stress and Coping. Symposium conducted at the annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association, Denver, CO.
*Tsouloupas, C. N., Carson, R. L., Matthews, R. A., Grawitch, M. J., & Barber, L. K. (2009, April). Examining teachers’ emotional regulation strategies as potential mediators between student discipline behavior and teacher burnout. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association, San Diego, CA.
Carson, R. L. (2009, March) Childcare provider stress and burnout: The promise of daily rejuvenation strategies. Presentation as part of Social Policy Lecture Series, The Edward Zigler Center in Child Development and Social Policy, Yale University, New Haven, CT.
Selected Research Grants
2012-2014 Carson, R. L. (PI), Castelli, D. (Co-PI); Beighle, A. (Collaborator). CSPAP Implementation by Certified Directors of Physical Activity. National Association for Sport and Physical Education, Reston, VA. ($30,000).
2012-2013 Carson, R. L. (PI); Castelli, D. & Beighle, A. (Consultants). Building the Next Generation of Active Youth through Directors of Comprehensive School Physical Activity Programs. Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Active Living Research: Building Evidence to Prevent Childhood Obesity, Rapid-Response Round 3 Grants, San Diego, CA. ($150,000).
2011-2012 LSU College of Education Research Award. Teacher Emotional Regulation Scale (TERS) Development: Expanding and Applying Expertise to High-Need Louisiana Schools. ($6,250).
2010 LSU College of Education Research Award. Teacher Emotional Regulation and Burnout: Scale Development, Expanding Expertise, and Understanding the Associated Teaching Behaviors in Physical Education. ($1,500).
2009 Summer Stipend Grant Program, LSU Office of Research and Economic Development. An examination of on-the-job coping strategies that alleviate burnout and enhance work behaviors in teachers. ($5,000).