Attitude Theories of Relevance to Adapted Physical Education

in Adapted Physical Activity Quarterly
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  • 1 San Jose State University
  • 2 Texas Woman’s University
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This paper emphasizes that attitude research in adapted physical education must become increasingly theory oriented. Likewise, teacher training must broaden to include scholarly study in relation to social psychology and attitude theory. To facilitate progress in this direction, nine attitude theories have been abstracted from the literature and reviewed under four general headings: learning-behavior theories, cognitive integration theories, consistency theories, and reasoned action theory. Individual theories presented are (a) contact, (b) mediated generalization, (c) assimilation-contrast or persuasive communication, (d) stigma, (e) interpersonal relations, (f) group dynamics, (g) cognitive dissonance, and (h) reasoned action. Illustrations of how each theory applies to selected studies in adapted physical education research and practice are offered, and a lengthy reference list provides both primary and secondary sources for the further study of attitudes.

Request reprints from April Tripp, Department of Human Performance, San Jose State University, One Washington Square, San Jose, CA 95192-0054.

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