Sexuality and Disability

, Volume 32, Issue 3, pp 247–258 | Cite as

Teachers’ Perspectives on Sexuality and Sexuality Education of Learners with Intellectual Disabilities in Nigeria

  • Toyin Janet Aderemi
Original Paper


Literature indicates a knowledge gap in the preparedness of teachers to deliver sexuality and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) prevention education to learners with intellectual disabilities in Africa. This paper reports on teachers’ opinions on sexuality of Nigerian learners with intellectual disabilities and awareness of their risk of HIV infection. The study utilized key informant interviews with 12 teachers to explore their views on the sexuality and risk of HIV exposure of learners with intellectual disabilities in special schools across Oyo State, Nigeria. Interview scripts were analyzed using interpretative phenomenological analysis. Teachers considered learners with intellectual disabilities as ‘hypersexual’ and incapable of intimate relationships. Learners with intellectual disabilities were reported to be at risk of exposure to HIV infection due to sexual abuse, transactional sex and lack of sexuality and HIV education. Teachers expressed confidence to deliver sexuality and HIV education but lacked skills to communicate relevant information to learners with intellectual disabilities in accessible formats. Teachers’ negative attitudes, misconception and lack of skills to deliver sexuality education to learners with intellectual disabilities have to be addressed through training. Further studies are needed to provide baseline information for developing a tailored sexuality and HIV education for Nigerian learners with different types of disabilities.


Sexuality HIV prevention Teachers Intellectual disabilities Nigeria 



This research was made possible by the Ford Foundation International Fellowship award received by the author.

Conflict of interest

The author declares that the author has no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Health Economics and HIV/AIDS Research Division (HEARD)University of KwaZulu-NatalDurbanSouth Africa

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