Comparative leadership potential of baccalaureate and master's level occupational therapy students



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Strong recommendations have been made to require a master's degree for entry level into occupational therapy practice, based on the contention that master's level students are older, thus more mature, and consequently potentially better leaders. Leadership among practicing occupational therapists has been declared essential to the future of the profession; however, extensive factual information should be assembled to support such statements concerning the superiority of master's students. As Fidler observed in 1979, it is essential to conduct data-gathering before decision-making, as decisions made without thorough study often lead to expensive activities, leaving the initial problems untouched. This study was made to compare senior baccalaureate and final-semester professional master's degree occupational therapy students on measures of intelligence, leadership dimensions, and personality qualities that have been shown to relate to leadership. One hundred female occupational therapy students, 50 graduate and 50 undergraduate, were evaluated at Texas Woman's University School of Occupational Therapy. In addition to covariates of age, educational level, and years of work experience, scores on three instruments were used to obtain the dependent variables: scores on the Wonderlic Personnel Test (WPT), Leadership Opinion Questionnaire (LOQ), and Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI). [...]



Leadership, Occupational therapy