Medical students' attitudes toward mental disorders before and after a psychiatric rotation

Steven W. Galka, David V. Perkins, Nancy Butler, Deborah A. Griffith, Alan D. Schmetzer, George Avirrappattu, Joan Esterline Lafuze

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Abstract

Objective: This study examines medical students' attitudes about mental illness before and after a six-week psychiatry rotation. Methods: Six hundred seventy-two third-year students at Indiana University completed pre- and postrotation surveys assessing attitudes about causes and treatments of mental illness. We conducted paired sample t tests to identify pre- and postrotation differences in attitudes. Results: Following the rotation, students perceived biological and social causes of mental disorders as more important and treatments as more effective but showed no change in their beliefs about the importance of working with families. Conclusions: Participation in a psychiatry rotation can strengthen student attitudes about biologically- and socially-based causes and community based treatments for mental illness.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)357-361
Number of pages5
JournalAcademic Psychiatry
Volume29
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1 2005

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ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

Cite this

Galka, S. W., Perkins, D. V., Butler, N., Griffith, D. A., Schmetzer, A. D., Avirrappattu, G., & Lafuze, J. E. (2005). Medical students' attitudes toward mental disorders before and after a psychiatric rotation. Academic Psychiatry, 29(4), 357-361. https://doi.org/10.1176/appi.ap.29.4.357