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Revista Salud Uninorte

Print version ISSN 0120-5552On-line version ISSN 2011-7531


BARRAZA, MARÍA A. et al. Empathy, components of empathy and empathic declination in students of nutrition and dietetics. Salud, Barranquilla [online]. 2019, vol.35, n.3, pp.360-373. ISSN 0120-5552.


Empathy is an important concept in the interaction between the nutrition and dietetics professional and the patient. This attribute must be instilled from an early age to be a natural part of the teaching-learning processes in the University. To determine the levels of empathy and its components, in students of nutrition and dietetics associated with the Course factor.

Material and methods:

Exploratory, cross-sectional study. Sample: 129 students (female gender). The Jefferson Empathy Scale was used. The possible differences in Empathy and its components between the courses were analyzed through non-parametric tests.


The levels of empathy and its components can be considered as relatively high. Differences were found between the courses studied, mainly in empathy and in the components Care with Compassion and Perspective Taking, but not in the component "Putting oneself in someone else's shoes". The relatively high values, the rise in levels of empathy as years of study increased, contradict some studies that suggest the presence of empathic decline over the years. The findings could constitute a diagnosis that allows us to explain what could be the possible causes and factors that can influence and explain, positively or negatively, the diagnosis of empathy observed.


Empathy levels are relatively high. They increase throughout the courses with the exception of the component "Putting yourself in the shoes of others.

Keywords : empathy; students; nutrition.

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