University of Twente Student Theses


Angst voor infecties : een ‘Mental models‘ onderzoek naar Toxoplasmose

Rachow, Lina Lioba (2015) Angst voor infecties : een ‘Mental models‘ onderzoek naar Toxoplasmose.

[img] PDF
Abstract:Background: Toxoplasmosis is a well-known zoonotic disease, an illness which can be passed on from animals to humans. Getting sick with toxoplasmosis can be dangerous explicitly for people who are immunocompromised of for pregnant women and their unborn child. The risk communication of toxoplasmosis does not fit with the mental models of the average population. According to Gentner and Stevens (2014) ‘mental models’ are representations or thought patterns in people’s heads which are build up through experience and interaction with the external world. Objective: The objective of this study is to figure out the mental models of the general population of toxoplasmosis relating to prevention, spread, origin, risk factors, consequences, treatment and need for information. Methods: The study is a qualitative research and is conducted by semi-structured interviews with Dutch people from the general public. Based on the seven topics prevention, spread, origin, risk factors, consequences, treatment and need for information the interviews are thematically analyzed. At the end the interviews are reviewed based on expert models whether the statements are correct or not. Results: In all topics, the nine participants named more factors than which actually influence toxoplasmosis. In each area the participants stated false things and they had nearly no knowledge on details. Many statements had no coherence with others or were not logical at all. Discussion: To improve the study, not only the content related knowledge should be figured out but also the anxiety and the psychological backgrounds in relation to the way in which information is processed should be emphasized in more detail. While figuring out the different topics in more detail this study can be used as basis for quantitative research, because the interviews guided to several categories. Through the interviews it got clear that the people would like to get information about toxoplasmosis via internet and that they need some support in getting familiar with the information. A website with user profiles and social support for the participants could improve the risk communication of toxoplasmosis.
Item Type:Essay (Bachelor)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:77 psychology
Programme:Psychology BSc (56604)
Link to this item:
Export this item as:BibTeX
HTML Citation
Reference Manager


Repository Staff Only: item control page