High School Students' Knowledge of HIV/AIDS and Perceived Risk of Currently Having AIDS

Robert H. DuRant, Carolyn Seymore Ashworth, Cheryl L Newman, Greg Gaillard

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


ABSTRACT: Factors associated with AIDS knowledge and perceived risk of currently having HIV infection among adolescents were examined. A modified version of the Centers for Disease Control's Health Risk Survey was administered to 11th and 12th grade students (N = 2,483) in homerooms from nine schools in one southeastern community. Knowledge was based on cumulative responses to 12 questions. Many adolescents incorrectly answered seven questions. Based on multivariate analysis of variance, lower AIDS knowledge was associated with no prior school‐based AIDS education (p ≤ 0.0001), previous IV drug use (p ≤ 0.0001), male gender (p ≤ 0.0001), and being Black or “other” ethnic group (p ≤ 0.0001). Based on interaction effects, Hispanics not receiving AIDS education in school (p ≤ 0.0001) and Black and “other” ethnic group IV drug users (p ≤ 0.0011) had a lower AIDS knowledge. When controlling for AIDS knowledge level (p ≤ 0.0001), higher perceived risk of current infection with HIV was associated with previous IV drug use (p ≤ 0.0001) and male gender (p ≤ 0.0001). However, previous IV drug users who never received AIDS education (p ≤ 0.0001) or were from Black or “other” ethnic group (p ≤ 0.008) had higher perceived risks of presently having HIV infection. 1992 American School Health Association

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)59-63
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of School Health
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1992
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Philosophy
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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