Development of an Attitude/belief Assessment Tool for Dietitians Counseling Elderly Diabetic Patients

J. O. Ham, K. M. Chapman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In the 1995 National Standards for Diabetes Education, the American Diabetes Association identified the need to develop valid and reliable measures of attitudes and beliefs that are easy to administer and interpret. Applying constructs from behavioral theories to clinical assessments can be difficult and time-consuming for dietitians whose main responsibility is education. The objective of this project was to develop an attitude and belief assessment tool which targeted older diabetic patients. Using the Theory of Planned Behavior and the Health Belief Model, diet-related attitudes and beliefs were evaluated in a random sample of 61 elderly (70±6 yrs) diabetic patients. The variables in these two models are attitude, subjective norm, perceived behavioral control, perceived severity of disease, perceived susceptibility of future complications, perceived barriers to adherence, and perceived benefits of adherence. The survey included several questions for each variable. Factor analysis with varimax rotation was used to determine the significance of individual questions. The resulting factor loadings were used to identify one lead question to represent each theoretical variable. In addition, inter-item correlation and Cronbach's α were computed for each variable to help identify the lead questions. These lead questions were developed into a one-page assessment tool. The assessment tool is being used by dietitians to identify attitudes and beliefs which are important in motivating dietary adherence for individual elderly diabetic patients. Supported in part by Office of Gerontology and Aging Studies, University of Illinois.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)A72
JournalJournal of the American Dietetic Association
Issue number9 SUPPL.
StatePublished - Sep 1995

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Nutrition and Dietetics

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