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J Consult Clin Psychol. 1993 Feb;61(1):104-12.

African-American adolescents' knowledge, health-related attitudes, sexual behavior, and contraceptive decisions: implications for the prevention of adolescent HIV infection.

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  • 1Community Health Program, Jackson State University, Mississippi 39217-0105.


African-American adolescents (N = 195) completed measures of knowledge related to acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS), attitudes toward condoms, health locus of control, vulnerability to human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection, peer sexual norms, personal sexual behavior for the past 6 months, and contraceptive preferences. Hotelling's T2 tests revealed that girls were more knowledgeable about AIDS, reported fewer sexual partners, held more positive attitudes toward precautionary sexual behavior, and perceived themselves to have greater self-control than boys. Five variables accounted for 44% of the variance in condom use: condom use from the 1st intercourse occasion, earlier grade in school, lower belief in an external locus of control, and higher scores on the Effect on Sexual Experience and Self-Control subscales of the Condom Attitude Scale. Implications for the content, format, and timing of HIV prevention with African-American adolescents are discussed.

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