Attitudes to diversity: a cross‐cultural study of education students in Spain, England and the United States

M Cristina Cardona Molto, Lani Florian, Martyn Rouse, Laura M. Stough

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This study explores the beliefs and attitudes that university students enrolled in teacher education programmes in Spain, England and the US (Texas) hold about individuals who differ. A beliefs and attitudes toward difference scale (BATD) was constructed using nine dimensions of diversity; culture, language, socioeconomic status/social class, religion, gender, sexual orientation, political ideology, disability and special talent. A two‐way factorial analysis of variance indicated significant main effects due to the respondent groups on culture, religion and sexual orientation; significant main effects of worldview of difference on political ideology; and no interaction between the two factors on each of the nine domains of difference. An exploratory factor analysis was also performed in order to explore the viability of the theoretical model. The data suggest that attitudes towards people who differ include etic, emic and individual properties. These are discussed in terms of the uses of cross‐cultural data and further research opportunities.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)245-264
Number of pages20
JournalEuropean Journal of Teacher Education
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2010



  • cultural differences
  • pre-service teacher education
  • attitude change

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