• Initial evaluation of a university dementia awareness initiative

      Parveen, Sahdia; Haunch, K.; Kerry, F.; Oyebode, Jan R. (2018-09)
      Purpose: This paper describes a study which explored the knowledge and attitudes of university students towards people living with dementia, and developed and tested a dementia awareness workshop, Dementia Detectives: University edition, designed to improve knowledge and foster positive attitudes to dementia in students. Design/methodology/approach: Dementia Detectives: University edition was launched during Dementia Awareness Week and five workshops were delivered to university students. Forty-two participants attended and completed a knowledge and attitude measure before and after the workshop, as well as rating the workshop with regards to satisfaction, relevance, understanding and whether they would recommend the workshop to friends. Findings: Students perceived living with dementia to be a negative and stigmatised experience. The workshop scored highly in terms of satisfaction, relevance and understanding and all students stated they would recommend the workshop to others. Paired t-tests found significant improvements in self-assessed dementia knowledge. Research Limitations: This was a pilot evaluation and further testing with larger samples is required. Practical implications: The workshop meets the requirements for tier 1 dementia education and training as outlined in the Dementia Core Skills and Knowledge Framework published by the Department of Health. Social implications: The workshop has the potential to increase knowledge, change attitudes, improve empathy and contribute to the development of a dementia aware workforce through undergraduate education. Originality/value: Dementia Detectives: University edition is a novel interactive method of dementia education and training.