Ageism among psychology students: A comparative analysis between Belgium and Quebec (Canada)


This study aimed to examine ageist attitudes in psychology students who may become the healthcare professionals. We also compared cultural differences between attitudes in Belgium and Quebec. We hypothesized that psychology students would have more positive attitudes toward older people in Quebec than in Belgium. Quebec has indeed more invested in age-friendly initiatives that may promote socio-economic factors associated with better attitudes toward older people. A total of 236 psychology students participated in this study (81 Belgian students and 155 Quebec students). The students completed different self-reported questionnaires to assess their attitudes toward older people. As predicted, the results showed that students in Quebec were overall less negative toward older adults. Since negative attitudes may influence students’ choice to work with older people and may also have damaging consequences in the assessment and/or healing context, we discuss different directions to improve these attitudes.

Topics in Cognitive Psychology, 4, 589-612