ERIC Number: ED209976
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1981
Reference Count: 0
Masculine and Feminine Personality Attributes of Dental Students and Attitudes Toward Women's Roles in Society.
Bebeau, Muriel J.; Loupe, Michael J.
Egalitarian attitudes and the personality traits of instrumentality (masculinity) and expressiveness (femininity) were examined for 314 male and 71 female dental students and for women in dental auxiliary programs. The objectives were to (1) investigate their possible correlates (e.g., parental occupation, status, age) and to compare the attitudes toward societal roles of women held by professional and paraprofessional groups with the attitudes of the general population and (2) examine dental students' self-reports of masculine/feminine attributes. The Attitude Toward Women Scale (AWS) and the Personal Attributes Questionnaire (PAQ) were administered to three classes of dental students, female dental hygiene students, and women in the dental assisting program at the University of Minnesota. Among the conclusions are the following: (1) Women who enter dentistry are different from college women in general--stronger on the instrumentality trait and weaker on the expressiveness trait--and also hold more egalitarian attitudes towards women's roles. Except for their attitudes towards women's roles, these women are much more similar to dental men than to other women. (2) Professional men are only slightly different from college men on the masculinity trait, with slightly though significantly higher scores and slightly more egalitarian attitudes toward the roles of women. (3) A comparison between dental students and a group of established professionals seems to suggest that women entering dentistry do so because they are like the men of dentistry. Questions for research as well as for professional education in U.S. dental schools are posed on desirable gender-associated personality attributes for the dental health practitioner, and the effect of these characteristics on patient treatment styles, public access to dental care, and the individual's oral health condition. (CC)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (Los Angeles, CA, 1981).