ERIC Number: ED275946
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1986-Apr-17
Reference Count: 0
Individual Differences in Perceptions of Disabilities: An Application to Rehabilitation Counseling Students.
Rounds, James B., Jr.; Neubauer, Nancy A.
How people perceive disabilities plays an important role in the lives of individuals with disabilities, in rehabilitation theories, and in the professional training and practice of rehabilitation counselors. Individual differences in subjective perceptions of disabilities were investigated. Thirty-seven applicants (22 unsuccessful and 15 successful) to a rehabilitation counseling master's degree program and 29 graduate students (12 first year and 17 second year) in this program judged the similarity of all possible pairs of 12 disabilities. In addition, each of the 12 disabilities was rated on 15 attribute scales. The similarity judgments were scaled with a three-way multidimensional scaling (MDS) analysis, yielding a three-dimensional solution. Regressing attribute ratings onto the MDS stimulus coordinates suggested that the dimensions of normality, severity, and controllability were significant components of the disability perceptions. In comparison to the second year students, the unsuccessful applicants gave significantly more weight to the normality dimension in judging the similarities among disabilities. A comparison of these results with prior research and the applicability of the MDS dimensions to the design of interventions for changing attitudes toward disabilities are discussed. (Author/NB)
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 (67th, San Francisco, CA, April 16-20, 1986). For related document, see CG 019 450.