Hannah J. Lowe, Meredith N. Schlabig



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The purpose of this study was to assess the impact of "Eating Disorder Diagnoses and Treatments: An Educational Symposium," a one-day event that was held at the University of Dayton on November 3, 2012. The goals of this symposium were to increase the attendees' knowledge about eating disorders and to improve their attitudes toward individuals with these disorders. The symposium was composed of presentations by health and mental healthcare professionals who shared research, statistics, case studies, and anecdotes and artifacts from their clinical experience. Speakers included a Psychologist, a Board-Certified Music Therapist, a Licensed Registered Dietitian, and a Registered and Board-Certified Art Therapist. In addition, a UD Music Therapy major shared personal testimony related to her own experiences of battling an eating disorder. Symposium attendees were invited to voluntarily and anonymously complete a 5-question survey that assessed knowledge and attitudes related to eating disorders and their treatments. Participants completed the survey both prior to and after attending symposium sessions. Five 5-point Likert scales captured attendees' 1) knowledge about diagnoses, 2) knowledge about treatment, and the degree to which they were 3) judgmental, 4) concerned, and 5) sympathetic toward individuals with eating disorders. Survey results indicate an encouraging trend: In general, respondents--even those who attended only a portion of the symposium--reported increases in knowledge about eating disorders and positive changes in attitudes toward those affected by these disorders. Specific results will be presented, along with plausible interpretations of findings, study limitations, and suggestions for future research pertaining to eating disorders.

Publication Date


Project Designation

Independent Research

Primary Advisor

Susan C. Gardstrom

Primary Advisor's Department



Stander Symposium poster

Eating Disorder Diagnoses and Treatments: The Impact of an Educational Symposium