Degree Name

MSAH (Master of Science in Allied Health)


Allied Health

Date of Award


Committee Chair or Co-Chairs

Deborah Dotson

Committee Members

Ester Verhovsek, Randy Byington


Professional associations must have a significant level of membership to be effective. Georgia membership is increasingly low; therefore, ADHA cannot represent dental hygienists’ interests. This study determined factors that caused dental hygienists to continue to forgo membership in the ADHA. Several theoretical views of professional membership were considered. The sample was acquired from an unbiased systematic sampling of 50% (3,270) of registered dental hygienists and a convenience sampling of ADHA nonmembers at 2 continuing education seminars in Georgia. Data collection procedures included an electronic cover letter, consent form, and survey via Survey Monkey or hard copies for seminars. Three hundred sixteen participated yielded a 9.6% return rate. Participants were primarily women, holding associate degrees, and graduates of programs in Georgia. Participants worked full time in private practice, were satisfied with their working hours, and did not join GDHA because membership fee is too high or not sure of benefits offered. Twenty-one percent stated that lowering membership fee would entice them to join, and participants indicated they obtained their continuing education hours at the Hinman (52%) convention and online (27%).

Document Type

Thesis - unrestricted


Copyright by the authors.