School of Behavioral Sciences


Doctor of Education in Community Care and Counseling (EdD)


Fred Volk


health care, physicians, religion, spirituality, medical resident intentions, theory of planned behavior




The purpose of this study was to explore whether subjective norms moderate the relationship between perceived control and behavioral intention and between self-efficacy and behavioral intention to address religion and spirituality (r/s) in patient care among first- through fifth-year medical residents. The study used a non-experimental design and included a sample of medical residents working in a hospital system in southeastern Pennsylvania during the summer of the 2021 were gathered to respond to the survey questionnaire measuring subjective norms, perceived control and behavioral control and behavioral intention, and self-efficacy variables. The instrument used for this study, Assessing Residents' Intentions to Address Religion/Spirituality in Patient Care, was adapted from an instrument used to measure medical residents’ intentions to adopt a comprehensive scope of practice after exposure to Canada’s Triple C curriculum. The results showed that perceived control, self-efficacy, and subjective norms are not significant predictors of intent to address r/s in patient care, and further, that subjective norm does not moderate the relationships between perceived control, self-efficacy, and intention. Recommendations for further research include examining variables across specific demographics, identifying attitudes as a possible moderating variable, and exploring the impact of the hidden medical curriculum on resident behaviors, attitudes, and values related to r/s in patient care. Finally, a future study that examines the physician-chaplain relationship may lead to increased assessment of and engagement in r/s issues.

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