ERIC Number: ED339937
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1991-Aug
Attitudes of Teenagers Who Know Someone with AIDS.
Zimet, Gregory D.
These studies examined how knowing someone with Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS) or Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) influences AIDS-related attitudes in adolescents. An initial study demographically matched 25 Cleveland junior and senior high school students who indicated knowing a person with AIDS (PWA) with 25 students who did not indicate knowing a PWA. The two groups were compared on their knowledge, beliefs, social anxiety, and vulnerability fears regarding AIDS and HIV infection. In the initial study, only social anxiety differed between the two groups, with those knowing a PWA reporting lower social anxiety than the matched group. No support was found for the hypothesis that knowing someone with AIDS or HIV infection would lead to increased vulnerability fears. An expanded study was performed to confirm initial results and examine the impact of relationship closeness and demographic similarity on adolescents who reported knowing someone with AIDS or HIV infection. Subjects included 68 high school students who knew a PWA, and 68 students who did not. Results supported findings of the initial study. Teenagers who reported knowing a PWA demonstrated less anxiety about interacting with persons with AIDS. As in the initial investigation, no support was found for the hypothesis that teenagers who know someone with AIDS will have higher levels of worry about personal vulnerability to HIV infection than those who do not know someone with AIDS. (LLL)
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 (99th, San Francisco, CA, August 16-20, 1991).