Mental Disabilities



An Investigation of Attitudes Towards People with Mental Disabilities

girls in a row

Author: Laura Jauregui
Date: October 19,2014


Does what you study impact your attitude towards people with mental disabilities? Previous research has examined the association between experience and attitudes towards people with mental disabilities (Crowson, 2010) and has found a strong positive correlation between the two variables. Researchers have also found a mild correlation between career pursued and attitudes towards people with mental disabilities (Hampton & Xiao, 2009). Very little research, however, has been done to distinguish between education and social attitudes regarding people with mental disabilities. This study looked at differences in major and its effect on both educational and social environments with people who have mental disabilities.


- 74 undergraduates from the University of Dallas
- The participants completed a survey:
          - 11 Likert-type questions assessing the participant's attitude towards social and         educational inclusion of people with mental disabilities
          - Questions regarding major, grade, and both social and educational experience with people who have mental disabilities.


Pearson's correlation:
- Non significant positive weak correlation between social experience and positive social attitudes
- Moderate significant positive correlation between social attitudes and self reported education
- Non significant positive weak correlation between social experience and educational attitudes
- Non significant negative weak correlation between course taken and positive educational attitudes
- Significant negative moderate correlation between course taken and self reported education.


Independent sample t-tests:
- Non significant results
- Non humanities majors had more positive attitudes regarding educational settings and the humanities majors had more positive attitudes regarding social settings.


People with mental disabilities have so much to offer yet we make such few efforts to include them. The study demonstrated that the more education a person receives regarding mental disabilities, the more they realize they have yet to learn.
This study demonstrates that the factor which most impacts our attitudes is our self reported knowledge, instead of outside experiences. This suggests that our own beliefs are what impact attitudes the most.
Thus, I ask you to assess what sort of a society we as individuals are providing for others. Are our attitudes inclusive or exclusive towards those which we don't understand?



2018 Galbraith Lecture Explores 'Dante and Liturgical Time'

As we age, most of us ask ourselves, where has the time gone? Borrowing text from UD's Core curriculum, this spring semester's Galbraith Lecture will explore the difference between our own perception of time, and how the philosopher-poet Dante Alighieri viewed mankind's immortal clock, steeped in Scripture and in life.

+ Read More

UD Presents: 'Dwelling: Paintings by Peter Ligon and Layla Luna'

The Beatrice M. Haggerty Gallery is pleased to announce an upcoming exhibition featuring two Dallas/Fort Worth area artists, Peter Ligon and Layla Luna, who articulate the architectural styling of dwelling spaces in their paintings. Both artists will give presentations at an opening reception on Friday, March 23, at 5:30 p.m. in the Haggar Art History Auditorium located in the Haggerty Art Village on the University of Dallas’ Irving campus.

+ Read More

Politics Major Empowers Youth, Shares Story Through Theater

Although she herself is not able to vote, Liz Magallanes, BA '18, works to make voting possible for other people. She first got involved with the organization Mi Familia Vota in 2014 and has been contributing to their endeavors ever since, including working with high school students in Dallas ISD. Additionally, she recently had a role in the play "Deferred Action."

+ Read More