EFFECTS OF PEER EDUCATION ON AWARENESS AND ATTITUDE TOWARDS HIV AND AIDS AMONG IN-SCHOOL ADOLESCENTS

ABSTRACT

This study was designed to determine the effects of peer education on
awareness and attitude towards HIV and AIDs among in- school adolescents in
Enugu State. To guide this study, six research questions were posed and six null
hypotheses formulated and tested at 0.05 level of significance. The research
design used in this study was non-equivalent control group Quasi-Experimental
involving experimental treatment group and a control group. The sample for the
study was made up of 231 students in SSII. A random sampling technique was
used to draw two co-educational schools from each of the local government
areas and they were randomly assigned to both experimental and control
groups. Three trained research assistants were used for the experiment while the
control group was not exposed to any treatment. A 20-item researcher designed
questionnaire titled HIV and AIDS Awareness and Attitude Questionnaire
(HAAAQ) was used for the study. The reliability of the instrument was
determined using Cronbach Alpha statistic which yielded Alpha co-efficient
values of 0.80 and 0.79 for the two clusters. Measures were taken to control the
extraneous variables. A pretest of the questionnaire was administered before the
treatment on peer education that lasted for six weeks. The data collected were
analysed using Mean, and Analysis of Covariance.(ANCOVA) The Results
revealed that: students exposed to treatment on peer education have higher
awareness of HIV and AIDS when compared to those of the control group;
gender is not a significant factor influencing students awareness towards HIV
and AIDS, students exposed to treatment on peer education have a higher
positive attitude towards HIV and AIDS compared to those of the control.
Furthermore, gender does not significantly influence students’ attitude towards
HIV and AIDS. Also, there is no interaction effect of gender and peer education
on students’ awareness as well as attitude towards HIV and AIDS. It was
recommended among others that school authorities should integrate play
method in the teaching of sexuality issues as this will create room for students
to utilize peer approach in learning; while federal and state ministries of
Education should organize and sponsor workshops and seminars for school
guidance counselors on how to implement peer education on awareness and
attitude towards HIV and AIDS among in-school adolescents.
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CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

Background of the Study

Adolescence period is characterized by emotional, intellectual,
physical, social and sexual changes and the individual is faced with various
challenges. Adolescence according to Conger, Kegan and Mussen (2004) is a
period of transition between childhood and adulthood. It is considered to last
from ages 10 to 19 and from puberty to full biological /physiological
maturation. Within this time frame, adolescents are affected by various
developmental transformations including physical, emotional, and social
changes. With these changes come many responsibilities and privileges that are
different from those of childhood or full adulthood, and these aspects ultimately
define the period of adolescence.

The word adolescence has it’s origin and meaning from Latin
perspective. In Latin, it implies “to grow into maturity” (Eke, 1989). The author
further noted that the common denominator in all adolescents experiences,
irrespective of cultural variations, is the biological change from childhood into
mature adult status capable of reproduction. According to Eke, during this
period, remarkable physical changes take place. Boys and girls experience a
spurt in growth. A sharp increase in height for girls at the ages of 11 and 13 and
in boys between 13 and 15. There is the presence of growth spurt which leads to
the development of primary and secondary sex characteristics. Nworah, (2004)
has it that adolescence is a period of rapid transitional or developmental
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changes from childhood to adulthood. It is a period when the physical and
physiological change that accompany the transition from childhood to
adulthood become manifest and continues into adulthood. Adolescence as noted
by Unachukwu and Ebenebe (2009) cover the age of 12 or 13 till the early
twenties.