Theses and Dissertations - UTB/UTPA
Physician assistant students' perceptions of mental illness: A correlational study of empathy, attitudes, and stigma levels
Date of Award
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Dr. Shawn P. Saladin
Dr. Sandra Hansmann
Dr. Audrey Jones
Physician assistant students’ perceptions and attitudes towards mental illness were examined in relation to their empathy levels. The theoretical frameworks of stigma and labeling were explored and examined through the use of surveys and questionnaires to assess prior attitudes and beliefs about individuals with a mental illness. Based on a multiple-regression model and multi-way analysis of variance, this study showed a statistical significance between an individual’s empathy levels and their stigmatization towards mental illness. In addition, the results of this study identified significant relationships between gender and race in terms of empathy. Implications of this study could have far-reaching effects on how healthcare professionals are trained to deal with persons with disabilities, more particularly, mental health and illness.
University of Texas-Pan American
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