The Effects of an Abstinence-Based Sex Education Program on Middle School Students' Knowledge and Beliefs

Elizabeth Mayfield Arnold, Thomas E. Smith, Dianne F. Harrison, David W. Springer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

11 Scopus citations

Abstract

A statewide evaluation of the Education Now and Babies Later (ENABL) program was conducted to assess its ability to increase adolescents' knowledge and beliefs about pregnancy prevention. ENABL is aimed at preventing teenage pregnancy through abstinence. Using a quasi experimental research methodology, middle school students (N= 1,450) comprised a treatment group (n = 974) and a comparison group (n = 476). Subjects completed a pretest and post-test reflecting knowledge and beliefs about teenage pregnancy. ANCOVA revealed significant differences (F = 8.98, p < .001) on posttest scores between the two groups. The treatment group showed marked improvement from pretest to posttest scores, whereas the comparison group did not. These findings support the claim that the Postponing Sexual Involvement (PSI) curriculum is effective in affecting students' knowledge and beliefs about teenage pregnancy and illuminate the need for social work intervention at a variety of levels to address this multifaceted problem.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)10-24
Number of pages15
JournalResearch on Social Work Practice
Volume9
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 1 1999
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Psychology(all)

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