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APHA Scientific Session and Event Listing

Assessing sexual risk behavior beliefs and self-efficacy for condom use among selected college students

Luis Horacio Solis Lopéz, MPH, Tobacco Prevention Coordinator, Families & Youth, Inc., 1320 S. Solano, Las Cruces, NM 88001, (505) 635-8157, luisolis@hotmail.com and Larry K. Olsen, DrPH, CHES, Department of Health Science, New Mexico State University, College of Health and Social Services, MSC 3446, 1335 International Mall, PO Box 30001, Las Cruces, NM 88011.

BACKGROUND: Despite known risks, only 15% of college students choose to remain virgins throughout their college experience (Cross & Morgan, 2003). Many of these students engage in high risk practices that make them vulnerable for unwanted pregnancies and STIs. PURPOSE: The purpose of this study was to determine the attitudes, norms, self-efficacy, and barriers to condom use among students attending selected two-year colleges in New Mexico. METHODS: A stratified random sample of basic English classes from three two-year institutions was selected for inclusion in the study. The instrument was an adaptation of an instrument developed by Yarber, Bauserman, Schereer, and Davis (1998). All data collection was done by the investigator to ensure continuity. Each dependent variable was analyzed using demographic data as the independent variable. RESULTS: A total of 234 students (63.2% women) completed the survey and 79% indicated they were sexually active. In terms of sexual activity with the same or opposite sex, only 33% who indicated they had penetrative vaginal sex indicated they always used condoms; only 41% who had penetrative anal sex always used condoms, and only 11% who had oral sex always used condoms. Over 95% of the sample felt comfortable discussing, purchasing or using condoms. CONCLUSIONS: The majority of these students engage in high risk non condom use sexual behaviors yet feel comfortable discussing, purchasing, or using them. Health educators on these campuses now have empirical data upon which to plan, implement, and evaluate sexual health programs to address these high risk behaviors.

Learning Objectives:

Keywords: Sexual Risk Behavior, Self-Efficacy

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Not Answered

Issues Pertaining to College Health

The 134th Annual Meeting & Exposition (November 4-8, 2006) of APHA