Effects of a Discussion-based, Extracurricular Diversity Program on Explicit and Implicit Biases in Pre-Health Undergraduate Students

Karthik Reddy, Reuben Burch, Shreya Dhutia, Shreya Grandhi, Jacqueline Martinez, Monica Patel, Elijah QuiƱones, Jonathan Wyatt, and Dr. Lynn Marie Nichols, UAB Honors College, University of Alabama at Birmingham, 1720 University Blvd, Birmingham, AL 35294

Certain racial and ethnic groups are systemically unrepresented in healthcare occupations. One of the solutions to this problem are programs to increase the representation of under-represented minorities (URMs) in healthcare. The goal of these diversity programs is to increase the representation of URMs in provider roles, which has proven to positively effect outcomes in African American and Hispanic patients.
While these diversity programs have made progress, studies have shown that minority students are still underrepresented in professional healthcare schools (PHSs). One effort being undertaken by PHSs is to offer diversity education to enhance cross-cultural patient-provide encounters to eliminate health inequities. Yet, very little work has been done to offer this type of education in the undergraduate pre-health curricula. Even less work has been done to understand the efficacy of these programs at improving biases and increasing cultural competence within this population. The purpose of this study is to examine if an extracurricular healthcare diversity program for undergraduate pre-health students can have an effect on extrinsic and intrinsic biases.
Spreading Healthcare Awareness through Reciprocal Education (SHARE) is a national organization that hosts weekly, discussion-based sessions led by diverse group of faculty on various topics concerning health inequities and the social determinants of health. The 2020-2021 cohort of students in this organization will be recruited for this study along with a control group of pre-health students from the University of Alabama at Birmingham who have not received any diversity education.
After 18 sessions, the SHARE group will receive an established Implicit Association Test (IAT) to assess unconscious racial bias, an IAT for social class bias, and the Color-Blind Racial Attitudes Scale (CoBRAS). These same measures will be administered to the control group. Differences in these assessments between groups could elucidate the need for increased cocurricular diversity education in the undergraduate, pre-health curriculum.

Additional Abstract Information

Presenters: Shreya Dhutia, Karthik Reddy, Shreya Grandhi, Reuben Burch, Elijah QuiƱones

Institution: University of Alabama at Birmingham

Type: Poster

Subject: Diversity Studies

Status: Approved

Time and Location

Session: Poster 5
Date/Time: Tue 12:30pm-1:30pm
Session Number: 4075