A Study of Labeling Theory Regarding Mental Illness, Criminal History, and Hireability
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Although research abounds in areas both in the perception of individuals with a mental illness and employment or with criminal history and employment perceptions, there is little information regarding individuals who have both a mental illness and criminal history in terms of the perceptions of prospective employers. This study looked at the perceptions of business students at the University of Central Missouri towards individuals who had a criminal history and/or a mental illness. A survey instrument was developed for this study which was found to be highly correlated with itself – indicating high reliability. It was found that individuals who have a mental illness are more likely to be viewed as less hireable by upper-level business students than individuals who do not have a mental illness.