Improving health care student attitudes toward older adults through educational interventions: A systematic review

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Educational institutions should aim to positively influence the attitudes of future health care practitioners toward older patients to ensure the provision of quality patient care. This systematic review of the literature aims to determine the effectiveness of educational interventions designed to improve health care student behaviors and/or attitudes toward older people. The 29 studies included in this review utilized a variety of interventions, methods, and measurement tools. The most common type of educational intervention incorporated interaction with real patients. Few studies evaluated the impact of interventions on behavior; therefore, more observational studies are required. Overall interventions incorporating interactions with real patients who are independently living had a positive impact on student attitudes toward older adults. Clinically focused placements with patients who are ill may still have a place in the development of the patient-centered interview and assessment skills, along with improving confidence and competence, despite not having a favorable impact on attitudes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)193-213
Number of pages21
JournalGerontology & Geriatrics Education
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 3 Apr 2018


  • Attitudes
  • education
  • health care student
  • older adults
  • older patients

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