Short Discussion on AIDS

Since the beginning of the AIDS epidemic, the media has often concentrated on the type of person who got AIDS (“high-risk groups”), not on the behaviors that made transmission from an infected to an uninfected person more likely. Many people mistakenly believe that because they are not members of any “high-risk groups,” they do not have to take any precautionary measures. Many college students seem to believe they are not at risk. However, a 1989 national study conducted by the American College Health Association indicated that one of every 500 college students is HIV-positive.1 Other studies indicate that college students score high on AIDS knowledge questionnaires, but have not altered their behavior to conform to their knowledge.

Consider the following findings from a study of 256 college students from southern Illinois:

  • 87% were currently or had been recently sexually active.
  • 18% stated intentions to have anal intercourse.
  • The mean number of sexual partners in a month was one and the mean number of sexual partners for 6 months was three.
  • For subjects who reported having more than one sexual partner (183 students), 60% had never used condoms.
  • 56% of white students and 36% of African-American students who reported having more than one sexual partner had never used condoms.
  • 32% reported that their sexual partner was opposed to using a condom.
  • The mean score for the students completing a 28-item test of AIDS-related facts was 23.5, demonstrating adequate basic knowledge of AIDS and HIV transmission.

To complete this forum select only one (1) of the questions below to respond to.

A. Begin your post by copying and pasting the question selected below.
B. Type your opinion and why you have this opinion.

  1. Do you think the statistics for your peers would be similar if they had participated in this study? Why or why not?
  2. How do you explain why many students who are knowledgeable about AIDS and sexually active with multiple partners fail to use condoms?
  3. What type of program do you think would persuade college students to adopt safer sexual behaviors?