Analysing Thurstone and Likert attitude scales as data collection methods


The development of the paramedic as a health care professional and the movement of paramedic education into the higher education setting has resulted in the need for paramedics and student paramedics to be aware of and understand research methods. This article does not explore or apply the entire research process, as it focuses on a specific part of the research. The article explores and contrasts two different data collection methods used to measure attitudes, one of which will be familiar to most healthcare professionals: the Likert Scale. Less frequently used is the Thurstone method and reasons for this are discussed. The author offers an example how these methods might be used to measure attitudes about the preparedness of paramedics to address end of life care issues.

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