Measurement and Conceptualisation of Attitudes and Social Norms Related to Discrimination against Children with Disabilities: A Systematic Review

Suruchi Sood, Kelli Kostizak, Sarah Stevens, Carmen Cronin, Astha Ramaiya, Priyanka Paddidam

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Despite multiple global commitments to protect the rights of people with disabilities, discriminatory attitudes and social norms continue to disadvantage children with disabilities (CWD) in various ways. This manuscript examines the conceptualisation and measurement of discriminatory attitudes and social norms towards to CWD. A systematic review of the literature was conducted across three databases. Peer-reviewed or grey literature published between 2005 and 2016 in English was included. Quality assessment was conducted for 44 articles. Overall, 45% were assessed as low quality, 7% were assessed as high quality, 57% had an explicit conceptual framework, 52% did not outline any definitions, and 7% involved participants in the research. The most commonly used scales were the Chedoke-McMaster Attitudes towards Children with Handicaps Scale (9%), the Attitude Towards Disabled Person Scale (6.8%), and the Opinions Relative to Integration scale (6.8%). The results demonstrate a general lack of clear definitions, methodological rigour in selecting participants, and beneficiary involvement in programming and evaluation. More efforts are needed to define the psychometric properties of key constructs and the language describing attitudes in commonly used scales requires significant updating. Overall, there is little evidence regarding measurement of discriminatory social norms against CWD. Several best practices for future research are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-16
Number of pages16
JournalInternational Journal of Disability, Development and Education
DOIs
StatePublished - 2020
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Measurement
  • attitudes
  • children
  • disabilities
  • discrimination
  • evaluation
  • social norms
  • systematic review

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Education
  • Health Professions (miscellaneous)
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

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