Assessment of Undergraduate Nursing Students' Perception towards Mentally Disabled Child
Keywords:Assessment, Perception, Undergraduate nursing students, mentally disabled child
Objectives: The study aims to assess undergraduate nursing students' perception towards mentally disabled child and to find out the relationships between their perceptions with their socio-demographic characteristics.
Methodology: A descriptive analytical study was carried out from January 15, 2014 to July 15th, 2015 to students of Nursing College /University of Baghdad. An accidental random sample of (200) students was involved in the present study from the four academic year in College of Nursing/Baghdad. Self-administrative questionnaire was constructed by the investigator for the present study. The constructed questionnaire consisted of two parts: first one contained the socio-demographic characteristics such as gender, age, marital status, income, scholastic stage, having disabled child as family member and as friend; second one contained 19 items which measure perception of the students. Content validity for the instrument was determined through the use of panel experts and the reliability estimated through the internal consistency of the instrument by the computation of Alpha Correlation Data were collected through the use of the constructed questionnaire and the process of the self-administrative report as means for data collection. Data were analyzed through the application of descriptive and inferential statistical approaches by using Statistical Package for Social Science (SPSS) version 13.0.
Results: The result of study indicates that (56.5%) of students were females, (53%) of them between 21-23 years old, (81%) of them were single, (98%) do not have mentally disabled child in their family, (95%) of students have no mentally disabled child as friend, while (85%) of them having low experience with mentally disabled child. Students hold moderate perception towards mentally disabled child. And they have low experience to contact with mentally disabled child. Perception of students influenced by their age, marital status, and experience with mentally disabled child, and does not affected by gender and scholastic stage.
Conclusions: The study concluded that undergraduate nursing students hold moderate level of negative perception towards children with mental disability, students' age, marital status, and having disabled child as family member have significant relationship with the level of perception toward disabled child.
Recommendations: The study recommended of changing students' perception positively towards mentally disabled child by increasing their knowledge and giving opportunity to contact with that group of patients. Focus on the media and scientific symposia within the college and inclusion vocabulary within mental health nursing syllabus to raise the awareness of the students about the disabled child in all its types.
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