Date of Award

Summer 8-2021

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

First Advisor

Steven Toaddy


The emotional-labor literature asserts that individuals respond to emotion-display requirements, called display rules, with surface and deep acting. However, surface acting, but not deep acting, relates to deleterious occupational-health outcomes. Deep acting, therefore, is a strategy organizations should promote, should they wish to prioritize the well-being of their employees. Unfortunately, little research exists that clarifies the emotional-labor-choice process. The current study used the job demands-resources model and self-determination theory to hypothesize that affective organizational commitment would differentially moderate the relationship between display rules and the methods of emotional labor. To evaluate this study's hypotheses, 320 participants on an online survey platform completed a survey for this study. A moderated path analysis indicated support for the relationship between display rules and surface acting but did not support the relationship between display rules and deep acting. Further, the results did not support the moderation hypotheses. I provide a comprehensive interpretation of this research and discuss implications for the predominant model of emotional labor. Additionally, I review the limitations, practical applications, and future directions of this study.