Title

The effects of two brief methods of intervention to improve students' attitudes and knowledge of aged adults and aging issues

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of two brief methods of intervention designed to increase awareness of aging issues and issues associated with ageism. Previous researchers investigating attitudes and knowledge toward aged individuals have studied adolescents, college and nursing students as well as other professionals. Their studies yielded conflicting results of both positive and negative attitudes. The overall results seemed to indicate a trend toward more positive attitudes. Sixty-nine undergraduate students were randomly assigned to four groups 1) Video Only; 2) Visualization Only; 3) Combined Video and Visualization; 4) Control. All participants were administered Palmore's Facts on Aging Quiz (FAQ) and Kogan's Attitude Toward Old People Scale (OP Scale) to measure their knowledge and attitudes toward older individuals before and after the treatments. It was hypothesized that: 1) all of the treatment groups would increase more than the control group in attitude. It was also hypothesized that the video only group and the video and visualization combined group would also score higher on knowledge only than the control group; 2) the combination of the video and visualization in the third treatment group would lead to the greatest increase in both attitude and knowledge scores compared to either of the two treatments alone; 3) the effectiveness of the visualization technique in increasing attitudes would vary depending on the quality of the individual's perceptual aging experience; and 4) males would change the most in their attitudes toward aged individuals. More specifically, it was hypothesized that they would have a greater increase in attitude from pre to post test than would the females. Additionally, it was expected that the females would have the highest post-test attitude score. An analysis of variance found that there were no significant differences between groups on attitudes; however, three out of the four groups showed small improvements in their attitude toward older adults. Furthermore, the Combination group significantly improved their knowledge of aging issues. The visualization technique was not found to have a significant effect on post test attitudes. However, while this was not hypothesized, the analysis of variance found an increase in knowledge scores for the Visualization Only group. Analysis also found that gender difference was a significant factor regarding attitudes toward older adults in which females were found to have more positive attitudes toward older adults than males. Finally, the analysis found that contact was not found to be a significant covariant on attitudes and knowledge. These findings were discussed in terms of the existing literature and suggestions for future research were made.

Notes

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Graduation Date

1995

Semester

Fall

Advisor

Tucker, Richard D.

Degree

Master of Science (M.S.)

College

College of Arts and Sciences

Department

Psychology

Format

Print

Pages

104 p.

Language

English

Length of Campus-only Access

None

Access Status

Masters Thesis (Open Access)

Identifier

DP0022768

Subjects

Arts and Sciences -- Dissertations, Academic; Dissertations, Academic -- Arts and Sciences

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