Adolescent perspectives on addressing teenage pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections in the classroom and beyond

Christopher M. Fisher, Lucille Kerr, Paulina Ezer, Aja D. Kneip Pelster, Jason D Coleman, Melissa K Tibbits

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Sex education both in and beyond the classroom has been shown to have the potential to ameliorate negative sexual health outcomes for adolescents. School-based sex education and sexual health services targeting young people should be informed, in part, by teenagers themselves. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 41 young people aged 13–22 years in a mid-sized midwest US city to inform such programme development. Analysis employed both top-down and bottom-up approaches to coding. Four themes emerged regarding sex education activities in and out of school: the need for knowledge of current activities aimed at prevention; information-seeking behaviours; personal views on how to address teenage pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections (STIs); and the ideal place to address these issues. Current activities were seen as ineffective or non-existent. Many participants indicated they would not engage actively in information-seeking unless they were affected personally by the issues. Participants’ suggestions of how to address the issues included improving school services, introducing media campaigns and having peer or trusted-adult educators. Participants identified the need for services that offered confidentiality, a non-judgemental approach and a comfortable space to meet. Through direct engagement with youth, this research makes recommendations for interventions to address teenage pregnancy and STIs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalSex Education
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2019

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sex education
pregnancy
adolescent
classroom
youth research
adult educator
media service
school
information-seeking behavior
coding
health service
campaign
interview
health

Keywords

  • Adolescents
  • programme development
  • sexual health
  • sexually transmitted infections
  • teenage pregnancy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)

Cite this

Adolescent perspectives on addressing teenage pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections in the classroom and beyond. / Fisher, Christopher M.; Kerr, Lucille; Ezer, Paulina; Kneip Pelster, Aja D.; Coleman, Jason D; Tibbits, Melissa K.

In: Sex Education, 01.01.2019.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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