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Research Proposal: Pilot Program of Sexual

Health Curriculum for Youth in Hattiesburg


Public School District, Forrest County,
Mississippi

Maria Lira Marquez: 003409509


Alejandra Sanchez: 004685537
HSCI 608: Health Research Methods
Dr. Yen
Spring 2019
Ice Breaker
1. What are the current policies in place in the United States that you are aware of
in regards to sexual health curriculums in schools?
2. Have there been any recent ones enacted in the state of California?
3. If there are any, what do schools have to educate about?
4. Why is this a controversial topic?
Background/Rationale
Gap leading to investigation: A thorough literature review was conducted and created
the gap that equivalent mandatory nationwide sexual health curriculums have not
been implemented and hence upbrought the need for an implementation of a pilot
program to address this issue.
Background/Rationale
The literature search did provide enough evidence to justify the need to engage in the
following research.

Case for proposed research:

● Implement a pilot program on sexual health education curriculum at Hattiesburg


School District, Mississippi.
Background/Rationale
Purpose: The purpose of this research study is to prospectively determine the
knowledge of students based on current sexual health curriculum that is already being
implemented but is not inclusive of information of prevention of sexually transmitted
infections and also if they are knowledgeable of alternative birth control methods in
the Hattiesburg Public School District in Forrest County, Mississippi.

Hypothesis: Due to the lack of mandatory nationwide policy implementation and


equivalent curriculum on school campuses that is evidenced-based sexual health
curriculum amongst youth aged 12-19 years of age in the United States, it is
hypothesized that there is a lack of knowledge on alternative sexual practice methods
amongst this population.
Methodology
Target Population:

● Youth under the age of 21 (as defined as the legal minority age in the state of
Mississippi) who are currently enrolled Hattiesburg Public School District in
Forrest County, Mississippi.
● Inclusion of all participants for this pilot program within the age group at risk of
teen births and sexually transmitted infections. For the purpose of this study
students over the age of 21 or no longer enrolled in a public school would be
excluded from the study in efforts to obtain the most relevant information that
can be addressed towards the proposed goal.
Methodology
Sampling Method:

● Stratified Sampling
● The subpopulation is representative for the purpose of this study because it
focuses on a county in which teen birth rates and sexually transmitted infections
are at alarming rates and because the sexual health education material excludes
the use of any alternative methods besides abstinence.
Methodology: Variables
Independent Variables: Gender, age, ethnicity.

Dependent Variables: The awareness of sexual health curriculum within the


participants school, the students awareness and knowledge on alternative methods
apart from abstinence for birth control and prevention of sexually transmitted
infections.

Confounding Variables: Students choice of participation, Students personal views and


beliefs on topics addressed, influence through their family, or politically conservative
community. Declined Parent consent, would also decrease the participation of some
students.
Methodology: Research Design
● A survey would be administered during current health education courses.
● This correlational research design was chosen because it allows for understanding
of the awareness and knowledge of the participants to the topics presented.
Methodology: Measurement/Collection Method
● Staff currently implementing health education curriculum would collect the data
and turn in to the Mississippi Department of Public Health.
● Participants were informed that all information obtained would be anonymous
and would only be disclosed for study purposes.
● Parental consent would be sent prior to initiation of the study to comply with
laws within the state.
Survey:
Survey
The first 3 questions focus on demographics:

● Age
● Gender
● Race/ Ethnicity
Survey:
Questions 4 and 5:

● Is the participant sexually active


● Are they aware if their school educates on sexual health
Survey:
Questions 6-8:

● Knowledge on birth control and if it protects against sexually transmitted


infections (STIs)
● What type of birth control is being used and why

Question 9:

● Reason for not using birth control

Question: 10

● Recommendations
Public Health Implications
● The results from this pilot program can be used to initiate a statewide
understanding of why such programs are necessary to reduce sexual transmitted
infections as well as decrease high teen birth rates.
● Further studies can also use the results of this research as a reference for future
public health research amongst other states who also have currently high sexual
transmitted infection rates and high teen birth rates.
● The significance of the research from this pilot program could close the gap that
current literature reviews are missing.
● Future research might compare the effectiveness and/or acceptability of
interventions that incorporate the recommendations of the current study and
interventions available.
Research limitations
● The research proposal goal is focused on implementation of a pilot program of
sexual health curriculum amongst public schools within the state of Mississippi.
● Answers provided by students are considered a limitation due to self-reporting.
● Recall bias is also a limitation for participants as they try to answer questions on
the survey.
Questions or Comments?

Thank you!
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