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Escritos de Psicología (Internet)

On-line version ISSN 1989-3809Print version ISSN 1138-2635


PEREA-MEDIAVILLA, María A.; LOPEZ-CEPERO, Javier; TEJADA-ROLDAN, Arcadio  and  SARASOLA, José Luis. Animal-assisted interventions and quality of life: expectations among Spanish University students. Escritos de Psicología [online]. 2014, vol.7, n.3, pp.10-18. ISSN 1989-3809.

The present study assessed expectations among university students (N= 474, X= 22.7, SD=5.6 years) towards the possible benefits of animal-assisted interventions on quality of life. Attitudes were measured with the Improving Quality of Life scale, which is an instrument created ad hoc that demonstrated adequate psychometric properties (four easily interpretable factors, with 49% of explained variance and alphas ranging from .76 to .89). The results showed that the participants (from the departments of Social, Health or Educational Sciences) had very positive attitudes (high effect sizes, ES>.80) regardless of training. The experience of sharing households with pets was associated with better expectations. These findings emphasize the high expectations that future professionals in different fields hold regarding animal-assisted interventions, and highlight the current shortcomings in training curricula. The implications of these findings for the development of animal-assisted interventions are discussed.

Keywords : Quality of Life; Animal-Assisted Interventions; Animal-Assisted Therapy; University Students.

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