Honors College Theses

Publication Date



Nursing (BSN)

Document Type and Release Option

Thesis (open access)

Faculty Mentor

Dr. Sheri Carey


Stigma is a heavily researched topic across many different specialties in the healthcare field. The experience of being stigmatized has negative effects on psychological health and the overall quality of life of those with mental health issues. It is common for healthcare professionals to encounter and interact with children with emotional and behavioral disorders, therefore for healthcare workers, the luxury of having a low level of understanding on this topic cannot be afforded. Healthcare professionals not only have a higher incidence of interacting with this population, but they also play a vital role in the treatment of conditions that this population experiences along with promoting improvements in the dimensions of wellness. While there have been multiple studies assessing the perceived stigma toward this population in various types of clinicians, there is scarce research on the presence of this stigma within student nurse communities concerning their mental health knowledge and behaviors. In order to plan and implement educational interventions to reduce the impact of stigmatizing attitudes on the quality of care that children with emotional and behavioral disorders receive, it is important to first examine the attitudes of current healthcare students that will serve as future professionals. This study assessed a student nurse population using three different dimensions related to stigma: behavior, attitude, and knowledge.