An educational program's effects on students' attitudes toward people with disabilities: a 1-year follow-up.
The purpose of the study described here was to examine the attitudes of nursing students toward people with disabilities 1 year after the students had participated in an educational program on caring for such people. The program provided (a) information about this care, (b) simulated experiences related to different aspects of care, and (c) contact with disabled people as well as with rehabilitation health professionals. The study also examined how students' attitudes were influenced by the students' age, the number of years they had spent in the nursing program, their degree of experience in caring for people with disabilities, and their amount of personal interaction with disabled people. The Attitudes Towards Disabled Persons (ATDP) scale was administered to 67 nursing students before they completed the workshop. The participants were tested again 1 year later, thereby providing a matched group for examining attitude changes over time. The participants' attitudes were significantly more positive at the follow-up. At the 1-year follow-up, the ATDP scores of the intervention group were also compared with those of a second group of nursing students (n = 170) who had not participated in the educational program. The findings suggested that completion of the educational program was an important influence on students' development of positive attitudes toward people with disabilities.
Oermann, MH; Lindgren, CL
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