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Assessing the Influence of Exposure to Violent Living Condition, Knowledge, and Personal
Name: Assessing the Influence of Exposure to Violent Living Condition, Knowledge, and Personal
Pages: 27
Year: 2016
Language: English
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ASSESSING THE INFLUENCE OF EXPOSURE TO VIOLENT LIVING CONDITION, KNOWLEDGE, AND PERSONAL MOTIVATION ON HIV PREVENTION BEHAVIOR AMONG HISTORICALLY BLACK COLLEGE STUDENTS ABSTRACT Aim: This study assesses the effects of prevention education, prevention personal motivation, prevention knowledge, and past exposure to violent living conditions on HIV prevention behavioral skills among historically black college and University (HBCU) students. Study Design: Quasi experimental One shot Case Study Design. Place and duration of study: Fayetteville State University; November 2012 to May 2013. Methodology: Survey data of indicators of the four Information Motivation Behavioral skills (IMB) model's latent constructs prevention information or knowledge, prevention motivation, and prevention behavioral skills, and past exposure to violent living conditions (PEVLC) prevention was collected from students attending an HBCU. Exploratory principal component factor analysis and Cronbach's alpha test were performed to identify the factorial structure of the PEVLC questionnaire and reliability of the violent exposure subscales, respectively. Structural equation modeling analysis was performed to estimate the overall model fit indices and the magnitude of effects of prevention motivation, PEVLC prevention and prevention information or knowledge on the prevention behavior of the students. Results: The analysis found that personal motivation to prevent HIV infection had a large positive and significant effect on HIV prevention behavior. Witnessing violence with weapons prevention and sexual violence prevention had a moderate, but insignificant effect on HIV prevention behavior. HIV prevention knowledge, witnessing violence prevention, and violence


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victimization prevention had no meaningful effect on prevention behavior of HBCU students. Conclusion: Collectively, these findings suggest that to be effective, the focus of HIV prevention programs in HBCUs may be on promoting personal motivation, and identifying and treating students who have been exposed to past weapon and sexual violent living conditions for post traumatic stress disorder, rather than promoting HIV education. Keywords: Violence exposure, Health risk behavior, HIV prevention, historically black colleges and universities, confirmatory factor analysis, exploratory factor analysis, HBCU, Information Motivation Behavioral Skills model, structural equation modeling, HIV prevention motivation. INTRODUCTION The continued rise in HIV infection among college students in the United States has become a major health concern. Despite increased investments in HIV prevention programs on college campuses in the United States, high risk sexual behavior continues to occur among college students . Moreover, an examination of recent data indicate that while the trend in HIV infection seems to have stayed even or slightly reduced among college students in general, the trend among African American college students and African Americans aged 18 25 continues to rise . Independent research indicate that the incidence and spread of HIV/AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases among heterosexual college students attending Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) in the United States continue to rise at an alarming rate, despite increased investment in HIV prevention programs aimed at reducing engagement in risky sexual behavior among students on college campuses . Qualitative studies suggest that the most salient barriers to HIV prevention among black college students are negative views of condoms, trust issues, spontaneity, young age, non monogamous relationships,


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and perhaps most important, lack of prevention behavioral skills . Other researchers found that black college students are, for the most part, quite knowledgeable about HIV/AIDS, but this knowledge is not a predictor of safe sex among the college students . HIV prevention programs are more likely to succeed when they are based on empirical evidence and theory . Researchers have identified a number of factors that contribute to health risk behaviors. Among these factors are past exposure to violent living conditions and lack of lack of personal prevention motivation. Past exposure to violent living conditions (PEVLC) is witnessing or being a victim of excessive behavior such as fist fighting, shooting, muggings, robberies, gang related deaths, sexual assault, etc. at home, school, community, workplace, television or the environment . Personal motivation is conceptualized as personal attitudes towards performing preventive behavior . In principle, behavioral skills refer to an individual's sense of self efficacy necessary to engage in preventive behavior . Thus, an individual would need to perceive that he or she possesses the behavioral skills necessary for health risk prevention. With regards to past exposure to violent living conditions, a recent national study found that about 55% of urban adolescents have been exposed to some type of violence in their communities during their lifetime . Other researchers found that the rate of violent exposure differ greatly depending on the type of violent exposure (e.g., witnessing a violent act, victim of a violent act or both), the type of population being assessed (e.g., children or adolescents), and geographic location (e.g. rural versus urban) . Despite the widespread incidence of violence in the United States, its incidence has been found to be higher among racial minorities living in large, urban cities and within impoverished communities . Moreover, official crime statistics


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and homicide rates show that violence is higher among young males and racial minorities than their counterparts. For example, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported that males aged 15 19 years are four time more likely than females to die from homicide. Additionally, in 2006, homicide rate for black teenage males was nearly 20 times (66.4% per 100,000) higher than the rate for white teenage males (3.4% per 100,000), twice more than Hispanic teenage males (28.4% per 100,000), 4 times more for American Indian teenage males (16.9% per 100,000), and 6 times more than Asian American teenage males (11.5% per 100,000) . Numerous empirical studies have established a link between past exposure to violent living conditions and HIV infection risk behavior among youths . With regards to an association between HIV personal prevention motivation and HIV risk behavior, past exploratory research have found a negative link between these two variables among Historically Black College students . However, whether a causal link between these two constructs exist remains to be established. With regards to the effect of personal motivation on risk behavior, various behavior models have been used to predict risk behavior among college students with the goal of designing effective HIV/AIDS education and prevention programs. One theoretical model that has proven useful in explaining HIV prevention behavior and other health promoting behaviors and providing a useful framework for developing HIV prevention and promotion programs is the Information Motivation Behavioral Skills (IMB) model . In particular, the IMB model states that HIV prevention information and motivation works through prevention behavioral skills to influence risk reduction behaviors, such as safe sex practice . The model considers information and motivation to be independent constructs, but may relate to the practice


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of behavioral skills relevant to risk behavior change. In effect, the model proposes that to practice safe sex, it is necessary for an individual to possess the information or knowledge about how to prevent HIV infection, and the motivation to prevent HIV infection. The framework is appropriate because it is considered to be parsimonious, its constructs are operationally defined, and it specifies the causal linkages between its theoretical determinants and their relation to prevention behavior . Unlike other models, such as the theory of reasoned action and theory of planned reason , used in the study of HIV/AIDS and its risk factors, the IMB model has been validated extensively as providing a more comprehensive model for identifying socio cognitive predictors of health behavior outcomes (such as HIV prevention) that are of theoretical and empirical importance . In addition, the IMB model has been applicable to behaviors outside the HIV domain including voting behavior , breast self examination behavior among women , adolescence smoking behavior and oral rehydration behavior in developing countries . However, few studies have sought to test the applicability of prevailing theories of HIV risk behavior among students attending HBCUs. Previous research on information pertaining to HIV prevention has shown information to be an inconsistent predictor of HIV preventive behavior . However, when assessed within the framework of the IMB model, information has been a consistent predictor of HIV preventive behavioral skills . Motivation is theorized to include both personal motivation (that is, personal attitudes towards performing preventive behavior), as well as social motivation (that is, perceived social support for engaging in safe sex practice). In a sense, the IMB model suggest that an individual's motivation to engage in preventive behavior is determined not only by his or her own personal feelings about whether preventive behavior is good, but also whether friends and other referents provide social support for such preventive behavior. According to the IMB


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model, information and motivation influence risk prevention independently, and in large part, indirectly through behavioral skills needed to perform HIV preventive behavior . In principle, behavioral prevention skills refer to an individual's sense of self efficacy necessary to engage in preventive behavior. Thus, an individual would need to perceive that he or she possesses the behavioral skills necessary for health risk prevention. Using the IMB model, HIV and health promotion researchers have consistently found a strong association between motivation and behavioral skills . Other studies have shown that behavioral skills mediate the effects of motivation on preventive behavior and HIV prevention behavior . Recent research has shown a strong positive influence of personal motivation on HIV prevention behavior among Historically Black College students . In summation, the IMB model suggests that knowledgeable and motivated individuals who enact the relevant behavioral skills are more likely to practice the recommended preventive behaviors, such as HIV prevention. The purpose of this study was to assess the effect of past exposure to violent living conditions and personal motivation on HIV risk behavior within the framework of the IMB model among Historically Black College students. Specifically, the study was aimed at providing empirically ground answers to two research questions. First, what is the effect of past exposure to violent living conditions on HIV risk behavior among Historically Black College students? Second, what is the influence of knowledge of HIV prevention on HIV risk behavior among Historically Black College students? Third, what is the influence of personal motivation of HIV prevention on HIV risk behavior among Historically Black College students? Based on the discussion above, these three research questions translate into the three research hypotheses which were examined in this study. First, past exposure to violent living conditions has a


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positive effect on HIV prevention behavior. Second, Knowledge of HIV prevention has a positive effect on HIV prevention behavior. Third, personal prevention motivation has a positive influence on HIV prevention behavior. 2. METHODS 2.1 Research Design This study employed a cross sectional quasi experimental one shot case study design . This design is generally considered to be most useful in exploring researchable problems or developing ideas for action research, and considered to be appropriate when exploring individuals' acquisition of relatively new or less understood phenomenon, such as HIV prevention behavior of students attending HBCUs . A schematic representation of the design is displayed in Fig. 1. Treatment Post test X O2 Fig. 1. Quasi experimental one shot case study design where X is an HBCU student's past exposure to violent living conditions, HIV prevention knowledge, HIV prevention personal motivation. O 2 is the level of a student's HIV prevention behavior. 2.2 Participants and Procedure The Historically Black College selected for this study has a population of 6,217 college students enrolled. A breakdown of the population by race/ethnicity shows that approximately 70% is African American, 17% is Caucasian, 4% is Hispanic, 1% is Native American and 4% is other racial/ethnic groups. The age distribution of the student population consists of 55% in the age range of 17 25 years old, 31% aged 26 40 years, and 14% is over 40 years. Most of the


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students (68%) are females, while 32% is males. The distribution of the population by academic class shows that 19% is freshmen, 15% is sophomore, 18% is junior, 32% is senior, and 11% is graduate. Most of the students (66%) attending the university are enrolled as full time students, while 34% are part time. Participants in the study included a purposive, convenience sample of students aged 18 years or older attending this particular HBCU. After receiving Institutional Review Board's (IRB) approval, various professors were contacted and asked for permission to conduct the survey during a portion of their class time. Once the permission was granted, we met with the students during the class period and explained the purpose of the study to them. They were also informed that their participation was strictly voluntary and they may either opt not to participate in the study and leave or not provide a response to any of statements. In addition, the students were informed that no incentive will be provided for their participation in the study. The students who agreed to participate in the survey were provided with a consent form for them to read, sign and date. The consent form explained to the students that their participation was voluntary and would not affect their grade and their identity will be kept strictly confidential, and their names would not appear in any report. We adhered to all American Psychological Association (APA) research guidelines. This method varied from the traditional study in which researchers surveyed students in class during a 1 week period in 2003 . The survey was anonymous in that no identifying information was connected to individuals, or included in, the data set. Participants completed the survey during class time and returned them before leaving the class. Non participants were asked to remain quiet or were dismissed from the class early. The survey took less than 10 minutes to complete. A total of 297 students agreed to participate in the survey. 2.3 Measures


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A survey instrument developed and validated by researchers at Fayetteville State University in North Carolina was used to collect the data for this study . The survey instrument includes items measuring a person's level of prevention of past exposure to violent living conditions, HIV prevention knowledge, personal motivation to prevent HIV infection, and HIV prevention behavioral skills. Past Exposure to Violent Living Conditions. Past exposure to violent living conditions was measured by a battery of 17 items scored on a 4 point Likert scale ranging from 1=never at all to 4=very often. 1. I have seen someone pull a knife or gun on someone 2. I have cut or stabbed someone with a knife 3. I have shot at someone with a gun 4. I have seen someone shot with a gun 5. I have seen someone killed with a gun or knife 6. I have seen someone hit someone with a stick or baseball bat 7. I have hit someone with a stick or baseball bat 8. I have seen someone hit with an iron rod 9. I have seen someone throw stones or utensils at someone 10. I have seen someone sexually assault someone 11. I have been sexually assaulted by someone 12. I have been involved in fist fights 13. I have seen people involved in fist fights 14. I have seen people involve in fight with weapons 15. I have been involved in fights with weapons 16. I have seen someone shot with a gun 17. I have seen someone killed with a gun or knife The items were subjected to exploratory factor analysis (EFA) using a separate sample (N=147) from the same student population to determine the meaningful loading structure of the 17 items in the original past exposure to violent living condition instrument. In particular, principal component factor analysis applying the varimax rotation was used to reduce or organize the item pool into a smaller number of interpretable factors. The number of factors was determined by


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