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ERIC Number: ED473734
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2001-Nov
Pages: 22
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
It Won't Happen to Me: The Role of Optimistic Bias in African-American Teens' Risky Sexual Practices.
Chapin, John
Discovering why adolescents take sexual risks, despite knowledge of consequences, is a vital first step in combating the problem. Optimistic bias, the misperception that one is less likely than others to experience negative consequences from health behaviors, offers a promising explanation for adolescents' sexual risk-taking. Unfortunately, optimistic bias research has over-emphasized convenient college student samples and neglected adolescents and minority populations targeted with the actual campaigns. Results from a small-scale survey of "at-risk" youth indicate that African American adolescents exhibit optimistic bias, believing they are less likely than peers to become pregnant (or cause a pregnancy). Findings indicate that optimistic bias is linked to sexual risk-taking in youth, sexual intentions, and attitudes toward sexual activity. Although the current study is one of the first to include minority youth and one of the first to confirm a relationship between optimistic bias and risk behaviors, the findings suggest a promising course of action in reducing risky sexual practices among youth and, eventually, teen pregnancies. (Contains 62 references.) (Author)
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A