Lokon, E., Li, Y. & Kunkel, S. (2018). Increasing college students’ “liking” of older adults with dementia through arts-based service learning experience. Gerontology and Geriatric Education. DOI: 10.1080/02701960.2018.1515740
This study evaluates whether an arts-based intergenerational experience, Opening Minds through Art ( OMA), increases positive attitudes or allophilia (“liking for the other”—in this case, older adults with dementia) in students who joined the OMA program as compared with the control group. Pre- and post-tests of the Allophilia Scale were used to compare 216 students who participated in OMA and 499 students who did not. Hierarchical regression was used to investigate the association between OMA participation and students’ Allophilia scores. After one semester, results showed that OMA participation is significantly positively associated with students’ Affection, Comfort, Kinship, Engagement, and Enthusiasm toward older adults living with dementia. We conclude that increasing students’ allophilia towards older adults living with dementia is necessary and possible through well-designed intergenerational experiences.