Electronic Journal of Human Sexuality, Volume 1, November 10, 1998




Lisa Kirsten Hunter



Participants were 58 female undergraduate college students from a small, private university. They were recruited from undergraduate psychology courses and earned extra credit for participation. The age range was 18 - 23 with a mean of 20.1 (1.53). They were 53.6% Caucasian, 17.9% Asian, 12.5% Hispanic, 9.1% African-American and the balance were "Other". The class breakdown was Freshman 23.2%, Sophomore 30.4%, Junior 21.45 and Senior 20.5%. Three-quarters of the students currently were, or had been sexually active.


Participants were randomly assigned to three groups: information, covert modeling/rehearsal, and role play. The latter two groups received an additional intervention incorporating condom buying/carrying strategies. All participants were given a posttest and a 3-week follow-up test on all dependent measures. Random assignment was used to equate participants prior to intervention, as giving a pretest might have sensitized participants' posttest results. In addition, a measure of actual behavior was used which could not show any change until follow-up after the intervention ended. A 3 (information, covert modeling/rehearsal, role play) x 2 (posttest versus 3-week follow-up) split-plot factorial design was used.


The experiment was run in a classroom with enough desks and chairs for all the participants. The experimenter stood in front of the participants with the following materials: condoms, spermicidal lubricants, and penile models. In addition, there were various informational materials, including a flyer from Condomania and a flyer called Spermicides, Foam, and Condoms.


All participants filled out a basic demographic information sheet (Appendix A). The Attitude Toward Condom Scale (ATCS) (Brown, 1984) was used to examine attitudes towards condoms (Appendix B). The scale consists of 40 items, 20 worded positively and 20 worded negatively. Participants indicate for each item whether they (1) strongly disagree, to (5) strongly agree on a Likert-type scale. Negative items are reverse scored. Scores may range from 40 to 200, with a higher score indicating a more favorable attitude toward condoms. This scale has an internal consistency reliability coefficient of .93, an average inter-item correlation of .24, with a test-retest reliability of .84 (Tanner & Pollack, 1988). According to Brown (1984), the scale consists of five factors which account for 45% of the total variance. The major factor appears to be characterized by the safety and reliability of the condom while the other four factors are concerned with comfort, embarrassment, arousal, and interruption of sexual behavior.

The Condom Use Self-Efficacy Scale (CUSES), was used to measure expectations of success in obtaining, using, disposing of, and negotiating the use of condoms (Appendix C). The CUSES contains 28 statements rated on a Likert-type scale for agreement ranging from (0) strongly disagree to (4) strongly agree. The total scores may range from 0 to 112. The higher the score the higher the self-efficacy. This scale has a Cronbach's alpha = .91, with a test-retest correlation of .81. (Brafford & Beck, 1991)

The 30-item Informational-Motivational-Behavioral Skills (IMB) Model of AIDS-Preventative Behavior questionnaire (Fisher, Fisher, Williams & Malloy, 1994) was used to measure participants' perceived confidence and effectiveness that they can perform certain HIV/AIDS prevention skills (Appendix D). For example, participants rate how confident they will be in purchasing a condom from a store in the future. The measure has a Cronbach's alpha = .77 for gay men and .82 for college students. The range of possible scores is 0 to 131 for this measure. Higher scores indicate a higher degree of self-efficacy.

The Sexual History Questionnaire (SHQ) was derived from the research of Kelly et al. (1992). It is an 18-item behavioral questionnaire that will be used to delineate the sexual practices of the group (Appendix E). Respondents were asked to indicate if, in the past 3 weeks, they had engaged in any of several high risk behaviors such as having sex without discussing using a condom, did you have sex when you or your partner did not have a condom, or did you have sex with someone who refused to allow condoms to be used. They were also asked if they had been treated for any sexually transmitted diseases other than AIDS (e.g., gonorrhea, chlamydia) or tested for HIV in the past. No reliability information was presented.


Participants met in a classroom where they were told the general nature of the study and asked to read and sign an informed consent form. Participants were told that the study would last an hour. Participants were also informed that there would be a 3-week follow-up on the study that would require the completion of several questionnaires.

First, all groups were given basic information about condoms. The information consisted of education about condom facts, effectiveness, advantages and disadvantages, and proper condom use (Breitman, Knutson & Reed, 1987; The Institute for the Advanced Study of Human Sexuality, 1992). Information was also given about how to persuade a partner to use a condom, and how to request a sexual history.

In addition, two groups received a modeling demonstration on how to buy, keep, and carry condoms. I modeled one step and then the participants repeated/rehearsed that step in their head. I modeled walking through a store to the condom section and picking out condoms and purchasing them. I also modeled carrying condoms in a purse, bag, etc., that I took out of my medicine cabinet before a night out on the town. Each participant covertly modeled/rehearsed the scene an additional time.

The role play group received the same basic treatment as the covert modeling/rehearsal group. In addition, the participants paired off and practiced role playing two scenarios. The themes of the scenarios/role play were based on buying/carrying condoms. Scenario A explored asking a pharmacist about condom brands and purchasing condoms. Scenario B explored getting ready for a night on the town and carrying condoms with you. Each participant took the active role in the scenarios/role play. Each scenario focused on how to address these issues in a non threatening manner. All participants spontaneously generated possible responses to the scenarios. There were multiple session for each group.

Following the intervention, participants were given five forms. First, they filled out a demographic form. Then they completed the Attitude Toward Condom Scale, The Condom Use Self-Efficacy Scale, the Informational-Motivational-Behavioral Skills Model of AIDS-Preventative Behavior, and the Sexual History Questionnaire. Follow-up testing was conducted 3-weeks after completion of training.

For copies of the scripts, contact the author at lisakhma@aol.com

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