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Research Article  |   February 1991
Influence of Occupational Therapy Curricula on Students’ Attitudes Toward Persons With Disabilities
Author Affiliations
  • Joanne Phillips Estes, MS, OTR/L, at the time of this study, was a Supervisor in the Occupational Therapy Department of Henry Ford Hospital, Detroit, Michigan. (Mailing address: 7907 Bennington Drive, Cincinnati, Ohio 45241)
  • Carole A. Deyer, PhD, MT(ASCP), is Coordinator, Management Development, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Michigan, Detroit, Michigan. At the time of this study, she was Program Director and Associate Professor, Allied Health Education Master’s Program, Mercy College of Detroit, Detroit, Michigan
  • Ruth A. Hansen, PhD, OTR, FAOTA, is Graduate Coordinator and Associate Professor, Occupational Therapy Program, Eastern Michigan University, Ypsilanti, Michigan
  • J. Curtis Russell, PhD, is Director of Graduate Studies and Associate Professor of Psychology, Mercy College of Detroit, Detroit, Michigan
Article Information
Education of OTs and OTAs / Rehabilitation, Participation, and Disability / Education
Research Article   |   February 1991
Influence of Occupational Therapy Curricula on Students’ Attitudes Toward Persons With Disabilities
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, February 1991, Vol. 45, 156-159. doi:10.5014/ajot.45.2.156
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, February 1991, Vol. 45, 156-159. doi:10.5014/ajot.45.2.156
Abstract

The influence of occupational therapy curricula on students’ attitudes toward persons with disabilities was studied. Twenty-six female students in either their first or fourth (i.e, final) semester of the occupational therapy curriculum were assessed with the Attitudes Toward Disabled Persons Scale (ATDP) (Yukor, Block, & Younng, 1966). A comparison group, 26 female students in either their first or fourth semester of the medical technology program, was also assessed with this scale. As hypothesized, the fourth-semester occupational therapy students showed significantly higher scores than did the other three groups of subjects. Also as predicted, this same group showed significantly higher scores than their first-semester counterparts and the fourth-semester medical technology students. No significant difference was found between first-semester and fourth-semester medical technology students. The occupational therapy curriculum appears to positively influence students’ attitudes towards persons with disabilities.