The problem of the study was to investigate what factors influenced participation in regular gynecological examinations among college women in sororities, and to compare two educator types for an educational intervention that potentially could encourage compliance with American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology (ACOG) recommendations.
The research was a mixed-method educational intervention study of 422 sorority women at a large Midwestern University in the Spring semester, 2008. The quantitative component was a nested experimental design with intact groups. Participant pre-test quantitative surveys served as control group data. Intact groups were randomly assigned to associate instructor-versus peer educator-taught groups, and repeated measures were used after the educational intervention presentation. Qualitative measures included open-ended survey questions and student-initiated question-and-answer session.
Initial quantitative analysis included descriptive statistics examining demographic information with t-tests to determine whether the groups were homogenous. The remaining data were analyzed using multiple analyses of variance. The MANOVA examined dependent variables (1) knowledge, (2) attitude toward the gynecological exam, (3) subjective norms, and (4) perceived behavioral control, by the independent variable educator type. Qualitative results were compared thematically.
The intervention was effective at improving knowledge, attitudes, subjective norms, and perceived behavioral control regarding the gynecological exam. Peer educators were significantly more effective than an associate instructor at influencing these measures. There was some differentiation on subjective norms between those who had previously had a gynecological exam and those who had not. Qualitative results yielded common perceptions of the exam communicated to and from the participants, as well as advice for healthcare providers, and social acceptability of discussing the gynecological exam.
Recommendations for further study include: a replication of the study using a larger and more diverse sample (e.g., institutional type, ethnicity, and age); a study of gender-based healthcare providers to determine their perceptions of patients' cognitive and affective needs; and a qualitative study to discover women's experiences of the gynecological health screening.
|Advisor:||Ellis, Nancy T.|
|Commitee:||Lackey, Lara M., Seo, Dong-Chul, Sherwood-Laughlin, Catherine|
|Department:||School of Health, Physical Education and Recreation|
|School Location:||United States -- Indiana|
|Source:||DAI-B 69/08, Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Obstetrics, Public health, Health education|
|Keywords:||College women, Educational intervention, Gynecological exam, Gynecology, Peer educators, Reproductive health|
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