, Volume 27, Issue 2, pp 161-187

Reducing HIV risk-associated sexual behavior among african american adolescents: Testing the generality of intervention effects

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This randomized controlled trial tested the effects of a theory-based culture-sensitive HIV risk-reduction intervention among 496 inner-city African American adolescents (mean age = 13 years) and examined the generality of its effects as a function of the facilitator's race and gender and the gender composition of the intervention group. Adolescents who received the HIV risk-reduction intervention expressed more favorable behavioral beliefs about condoms, greater self-efficacy, and stronger condom-use intentions postintervention than did those who received a control intervention on other health issues. Six-month follow-up data collected on 93% of the adolescents revealed that those who received the HIV risk-reduction intervention reported less HIV risk-associated sexual behavior, including unprotected coitus, than did their counterparts in the control condition. Self-reported sexual behavior and changes in self-reported behavior were unrelated to scores on a standard measure of social desirability response bias. There was strong evidence for the generality of intervention effects. Moderator analyses testing eight specific interaction hypotheses and correlational analyses indicated that the effects of the HIV risk-reduction intervention did not vary as a function of the facilitator's race or gender, participant's gender, or the gender composition of the intervention group.

This research was supported in part by grants from the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (R01-HD24921), the National Institute of Mental Health (R01-MH45668), and the Social Science and Humanities Research Council of Canada. The authors gratefully acknowledge the contributions to this research of Margaret Bleier, Daria Boccher-Lattimore, Nancy L. Moore, Tatiana Perrino, Paul Pintella, and Fran Rosenfeld and the helpful suggestions of Isabel Fernandez, Caryn Lerman, and Ann O'Leary regarding an earlier version of this article.