Skip to content. Skip to main navigation.

Fall 2015

Inquiry Magazine Archive

  • Spring 2016

    Spring 2016: Premium Blend

    Found in everything from space shuttles to dental fillings, composite materials have thoroughly infiltrated modern society. But their potential is still greatly untapped, offering researchers ample opportunity for discovery.

  • Fall 2015

    Fall 2015: Collision Course

    Within the particle showers created at the Large Hadron Collider, answers to some of the universe’s mysteries are waiting.

  • Spring 2015

    Spring 2015: Almost Human

    Model systems like pigeons can help illuminate our own evolutionary and genomic history.

  • Fall 2014

    Fall 2014: Small Wonder

    UT Arlington's tiny windmills are bringing renewable energy to a whole new scale.

  • Winter 2014

    Winter 2014: Overdue for an Overhaul

    The stability of our highways, pipelines, and even manholes is reaching a breaking point.

  • 2012

    2012: Mystery solved?

    Scientists believe they have discovered a subatomic particle that is crucial to understanding the universe.

  • 2011

    2011: Boosting brain power

    UT Arlington researchers unlock clues to the human body’s most mysterious and complex organ.

  • 2010

    2010: Powered by genetics

    UT Arlington researchers probe the hidden world of microbes in search of renewable energy sources.

  • 2009

    2009: Winning the battle against pain

    Wounded soldiers are benefiting from Robert Gatchel’s program that combines physical rehabilitation with treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder.

  • 2009

    2007: Sensing a solution

    Tiny sensors implanted in the body show promise in combating acid reflux disease, pain and other health problems.

  • 2006

    2006:Semiconductors: The next generation

    Nanotechnology researchers pursue hybrid silicon chips with life-saving potential.

  • 2005

    2005: Imaging is everything

    Biomedical engineers combat diseases with procedures that are painless to patients.


Hear Me Now?

Study shows after-hours work emails provoke anger, disrupt personal lives in employees 

illustration of ocean wave

Employees deluged with after-hours work emails suffer real- world consequences.

America may be a nation of workaholics, but everyone has a limit. For many, that comes in the form of after-hours work emails, which, according to new research from the College of Business, can provoke anger in employees and interfere with their personal lives.

Management Associate Professor Marcus Butts is lead author on “Hot Buttons and Time Sinks: The Effects of Electronic Communication During Nonwork Time on Emotions and Work-Nonwork Conflict,” published in the July issue of Academy of Management Journal. He and his co-researchers surveyed 341 working adults during a seven-day period to track their feelings when they opened a work email away from the office.

“People who were part of the study reported that they became angry when they received a work email or text after they had gone home that was negatively worded or required a lot of their time,” 
Dr. Butts explains. “Also, the people who tried to separate their work lives from their personal lives experienced more work-life interference. The after-hours emails ended up affecting those workers’ personal lives.”

Overall, the researchers identified two major categories of workers: the segmentors and the integrators. The segmentors wanted to keep their personal and work lives separate; not surprisingly, these were the participants most negatively impacted by after-business-hours communications. The integrators wanted to know what was going on at work when they weren’t in the office; while they too got angry when receiving work communications at home, it didn’t interfere with their personal lives.

Rachel Croson, dean of the College of Business, says Butts’ study is important because electronic communications have become part of the fabric of everyone’s lives.

“Smartphones and the accompanying culture of ‘always on’ has made after-hours communication ubiquitous,” she says. “But, like everything else in business, it can be done well or badly, and implementation is critical for success. This study informs leaders not only whether and when, but also how to communicate with employees.”

Illustration by YAREK WASZUL

More articles from this issue

UT Arlington - Office of Research