REFERENCE: Hillman, E., Hovell, M.F., Williams, L., Hofstetter, R., Burdyshaw, C. (1991). Pregnancy, STDs, and AIDS prevention: Evaluation of New Image Teen Theatre. AIDS Education and Prevention, 3, 328-340.
New Image Teen Theatre combines peer education and theare in an informative and entertaining package. This study was undertaken to assess the effectiveness of New Image Teen Theatre on altering teenagers' attitudes, knowledge, and intentions regarding sexual behavior. A total of 143 adolescents between the ages of 13 and 19 viewed the performance. The performance focused on the prevention of pregnancy, AIDS, and STDs and included content aimed at increasing communication. Teen participants completed pretest and posttest questionnaires. Almost half of the adolescents reported having engaged in sexual intercourse. About one third of the sexually active reported never using birth control, and only 21% reported consistent use of condoms. These results confirm adolescdents' risk for pregnancy, STDs, and AIDS in particular. Following the performance, the teens reported significantly greater intention to use birth control (for sexually active teens), and demonstrated significantly greater sexual knowledge. Furthermore, they indicated that they had experienced more positive emotions than negative emotions while viewing the production. Results suggest that theatre education may set the stage for more comprehensive interventions designed to prevent pregnancy, STDs, and AIDS.