Substance Use Disorder Stigma Reduction among Health Professional Students: Module Development and Implementation in the SHOW Interprofessional Experiential Learning Course
This paper discusses the impact of substance use disorder (SUD) stigma on individuals with substance use disorders and details the development of a SUD Stigma Reduction pilot module for the Student Health Outreach for Wellness (SHOW) affiliated course (HCR 494 Complex Health - Immersion) offered at Arizona State University. This course was designed to educate pre-health professional and health professional students on complex health topics in an interprofessional, experiential-learning environment. The SUD and Stigma module developed in this thesis project provided students with information on SUDs and the opportunity to confront stigma, improving their perceptions on individuals with SUD.
The pilot module on SUD Stigma Reduction was researched, designed, and implemented in the HCR 494 course. After students completed the module, a retrospective pre-post survey was administered to evaluate the effectiveness of the module in two areas: content knowledge and personal perceptions. Only one student responded to the survey, placing limitations on analysis. The student’s response showed a general increase in understanding of the module material, matching the stated objectives, and positive changes in perceptions on people with SUDs. Due to the positive evaluation of the course, the pilot module was deemed successful and has been integrated into the HCR 494 course. Further research is necessary to determine the long term impact of stigma reduction modules in experiential learning courses.