The purpose of this study was to evaluate the practices and perceptions undergraduate students have of complementary and alternative medicine. This study also analyzed the purpose in which students use complementary and alternative medicine. A survey was distributed to 450 students attending undergraduate classes at a large Midwestern university. The survey was developed using A Complementary Alternative Medicine Questionnaire for Young Adults by Patterson and Arthur (2009). This survey consisted of 48 questions addressing demographic information, uses of complementary and alternative medicine, mind-body practices and beliefs of complementary and alternative medicine. There was a total of 307 responses; however,14 were eliminated as a result of incomplete responses. The data was analyzed with 293 completed surveys. There is a high use of certain CAM practices among sampled undergraduate students including, physical activity, breathing techniques, relaxation techniques, massage, and prayer. There were no gender differences in regard to males’ and females’ beliefs related to CAM. Gender differences were found with mind-body practices including males more likely than females to use movement therapy and females more likely than males to use prayer and yoga. Recommendations for further research include conducting this study among a broader representation of students.


Marlene Tappe

Committee Member

Mark Windschitl

Committee Member

Judith Luebke

Date of Degree




Document Type



Master of Science (MS)


Health Science


Allied Health and Nursing

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License



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