ERIC Number: ED326800
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1990-Aug
Reference Count: N/A
AIDS Education: Does It Change Attitudes toward Gay Men?
Slusher, Morgan P.; Anderson, Craig A.
Two studies were conducted to examine how attitudes toward homosexual men might affect reactions to Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) education efforts, or how those attitudes might be changed by those efforts. The first study involved 69 male and 75 female subjects, randomly assigned to four conditions receiving different information about AIDS. Subjects initially completed the Attitudes Toward Gay Men scale and a scale developed to assess beliefs about the potential spread of AIDS through casual contact (the Belief scale). The second study was similar to the first, although it examined the efficacy of the different types of communications over a longer period of time, and without the potential priming effects that could result from the initial measure of beliefs. The results of the two studies point out a distinction between affecting people's beliefs about the spread of AIDS and affecting related prejudices. Although the information manipulations had an impact on the specific beliefs related to the information, they did not appear to affect attitudes toward homosexual men. This distinction occurred despite the strong relation between initial AIDS-related beliefs and attitudes toward homosexual men found in the first study. The findings suggest that efforts to educate the public about AIDS, although important in their own right, cannot be regarded as a substitute for efforts to reduce antigay prejudice. (NB)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Convention of the American Psychological Association (98th, Boston, MA, August 10-14, 1990).