Publication Date


Document Type


First Advisor

Rimmer, James H.

Degree Name

M.S. Ed. (Master of Education)

Legacy Department

Department of Physical Education


Physical education for handicapped children; School children--Attitudes; Handicapped children


The purpose of this study was to develop and field test The Attitudes Toward the Disabled in Physical Education Scale (ATDPES). The final scale contains 30 items that describe children with various disabilities, and is designed to measure nondisabled students' attitudes toward their peers with disabilities in physical education class. The ATDPES was administered to 113 nondisabled students in grades 5 and 7. To examine concurrent validity the subjects also completed another instrument, The Peer Attitudes Toward the Handicapped Scale (PATHS), developed by Bagley and Greene. To establish reliability, 46 of the subjects completed the ATDPES 2 weeks after the initial administration. The scores for all subjects were analyzed, and a separate analysis was also conducted by grade level. The scores were subjected to an exploratory factor analysis and analyses for internal consistency, test-retest reliability, and intercorrelation. The factor analysis did not identify clearly defined factors, but four tentatively defined subscales were used in subsequent analyses. Internal consistency coefficients ranged from .85 to .90 for the total score across grades. For test-retest reliability, the intraclass correlation coefficients for the subscale and total scores were moderate to high (.44 to .80), with the highest value (.80) corresponding to the total score. The relationship between the ATDPES and PATHS total scores was moderate (r=.73) and the ATDPES subscale scores had low, positive correlations with one another (r=.13 to .37) and with the ATDPES total score (r=.52 to .72). It was concluded that the ATDPES has acceptable measures of content and concurrent validity and reliability for students in grades 5 and 7. The instrument can be utilized, looking at the total scores, to assess the general attitudes of a group toward persons with disabilities in a physical education setting, prior to or following a mainstreamed experience. It was recommended that further research include larger samples so the factor structure can be explored further. Reliability and validity also need to be documented for other grade levels.


Includes bibliographical references (pages [49]-53)


74 pages




Northern Illinois University

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