DOI: 10.1097/jte.0000000000000307 ISSN:

Students' Perception of Servant Leadership by Physical Therapy Faculty Mentors Is Associated With Interprofessional Socialization

Brad W. Willis
  • General Medicine
  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation
  • Rehabilitation
  • Health Policy


Promoting interprofessional collaborative practice (IPCP) is necessary. Consequently, investigating strategies associated with increased interprofessional socialization, the beliefs, behaviors, and attitudes underlying socialization toward IPCP is suggested. The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship, in the presence of control variables, between students' perception of servant leadership by physical therapy faculty mentors and interprofessional socialization.

Review of the Literature.

Although faculty mentors are associated with influencing students' socialization process and servant leadership is suggested to support collaborative care, investigations exploring these concepts within physical therapy education are limited.


Three cohorts of students (60 each) at an entry-level physical therapist education program in the Midwest of the United States. One hundred seventy individuals completed an anonymous paper-based composite survey, with 117 identifying the presence of an informal physical therapy faculty mentor.


This cross-sectional survey study, inclusive of student demographic control variables, examined the relationship between interprofessional socialization and perceptions of physical therapy faculty mentors, as measured by the Interprofessional Socialization and Valuing Scale (ISVS-21) and the Servant Leadership Measure (SL-7), respectively. Multiple linear regression was used to obtain the semi-partial correlation (sr) between the SL-7 and the ISVS-21, with significance accepted at P < .05.


Upon necessary assumptions being met, 114 participants were included with an analysis of variance identifying the model to be significant (F(8,105) = 2.59, P = .01). Multiple linear regression analysis found that the SL-7, in the presence of control variables, was associated with a significant proportion of ISVS-21 scores (R 2 = 0.17, F(8,105) = 2.59, P = .01). Notably, only the SL-7 demonstrated a significant contribution to ISVS-21 estimates (β = 0.358, P < .001), with a significant and positive sr of 0.34 (P < .001).

Discussion and Conclusion.

Perceptions of servant leadership by faculty mentors were positively correlated with interprofessional socialization. Findings bolster the theoretical link between servant leadership and interprofessional socialization, servant leadership in the development of faculty and mentorship programs, and the relevance of informal social interactions.

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