Index to Chiropractic Literature
Index to Chiropractic Literature
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ID 391
  Title Effects of gender and age on students' performance in adjustive technique classes
Journal J Chiropr Educ. 1999 Fall;13(2):114-130
Peer Review Yes
Publication Type Article
Abstract/Notes Physical manipulation in the form of spinal adjustments is the primary form of treatment offered by chiropractors. Entry requirements and teaching methods outlined by the Anglo-European College of Chiropractic (AECC) have to ensure that students are selected and trained in a way that will allow them to eventually leave the college as a group of competently skilled practitioners. If significant discrepancies in the adjustive performance of different student groups are found, alterations to the present selection process and teaching methods will have to be considered. The purpose of this study was to establish whether gender and age have any effect on students' performance in adjustive technique classes. A retrospective different subject design was used and the study was carried out at the Anglo-European College of Chiropractic. The performance of 183 mature entry students and 96 standard entry students belonging to three successive 3-year classes was analyzed. The sample consisted of 158 males and 112 females, with ages ranging from 21 to 53 years. Information from the 279 students was obtained from the AECC registry office. The data consisted of anonymous lists which yielded age, sex, and the grade point average (GPA) for adjustive technique classes of each student, Students of 25 years of age and over were considered to be mature entry students and students under the age of 25 were regarded as standard entry. These were further subdivided into four age-group categories. An unpaired t-test was used to determine gender differences and mature versus standard age student differences in GPA scores. A one-factor ANOVA was used to determine whether GPA scores differed among the four age groups. To aid interpretation of the results, an informal interview about performance criteria was conducted with faculty involved in the assessment of adjustive technique. At a probability value of p < 0.05, no statistically significant difference was found between the adjustive performance of male and female students. The male mean GPA was 68.4% (+/- 4.4 SID) and the female mean GPA was 67.8% (+/- 3.6 SID). Similarly, no statistically significant difference was found between the mean GPA for mature entry students (68.4% +/- 4.0 SID) and the mean GPA for standard entry students (67.7% +/- 4.4 SID). The ANOVA applied to the four different age groups established that students belonging to an age range of 25-29 years had a significantly higher mean GPA. An extensive literature review regarding the effects of age and gender on students' performance appeared to suggest that differences between student groups may exist. This, was not reflected in the present results. However, it was suggested that a variety of factors which were not taken into consideration during the study design may have been responsible for this outcome. Follow-up studies are therefore needed.

This abstract is reproduced with the permission of the publisher.

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