Date of Award


Document Type

Open Access Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Social Work (MSW)


Social Work


This paper places into an historical perspective the policy of deinstitutionalization of persons with mental retardation and its attendant affect on families. Historical analysis shows that institutional care for persons with mental retardation springs from societal and philosophical forces. This implication of the concepts of normalization and least restrictive setting are discussed in relation to deinstitutionalization with the conclusion that administrators, policy makers, and people that work in the mental retardation field must pay more attention to the rights and feelings of families with relatives who are mentally retarded. This paper also reviews eight studies done on parental attitudes toward deinstitutionalization to determine whether or not the questionnaire used produced a valid measurement.


SC 11.MSW.1994.Tannehil.SJ