Cognitive impact of a research-based school sex education programme

Abraham, C., Henderson, M. and Der, G. (2004) Cognitive impact of a research-based school sex education programme. Psychology and Health, 19(6), pp. 689-703. (doi:10.1080/08870440410001722921)

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Publisher's URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/08870440410001722921

Abstract

The cognitive impact of a research-based, teacher-delivered sex education programme for 13-15-year olds (SHARE) was evaluated in 25 Scottish schools. The relationship between cognitions targeted by SHARE and the sexual behaviour of teenagers who had first sexual intercourse after receiving sex education was assessed. The belief that there are alternatives to sexual intercourse in romantic/sexual relationships and the intention to resist unwanted sexual activities were significantly correlated with delayed sexual intercourse. An extended theory of planned behaviour, including descriptive norm and anticipated regret, provided a good model of the cognitive correlates of consistent condom use, explaining 25.9% of the variance. The impact of the SHARE programme on targeted cognitions was compared to that of conventional sex education by means of a randomised controlled trial, taking account of school effects. Those receiving SHARE had significantly higher scores on the belief that there are alternatives to sexual intercourse in romantic/sexual relationships, intentions to resist unwanted sexual activities and intentions to discuss condoms with sexual partners. SHARE recipients were also less likely to agree that condom use would interrupt sexual fun and reduce sexual enjoyment. However, mean differences between trial arms were small and no significant differences were found for the strongest cognitive correlates of consistent condom use, including the intention to always use a condom.

Item Type:Articles
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Der, Mr Geoffrey and Henderson, Dr Marion
Authors: Abraham, C., Henderson, M., and Der, G.
Subjects:R Medicine > R Medicine (General)
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Health and Wellbeing > MRC/CSO Unit
College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Medicine, Dentistry & Nursing > Centre for Population and Health Sciences
Journal Name:Psychology and Health
Publisher:Routledge (Taylor and Francis)
ISSN:0887-0446
ISSN (Online):1476-8321
Published Online:01 February 2007

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