A Review of 21 Curricula for Abstinence-Only-until-Marriage Programs

By Wilson, Kelly L.; Goodson, Patricia et al. | Journal of School Health, March 2005 | Go to article overview

A Review of 21 Curricula for Abstinence-Only-until-Marriage Programs


Wilson, Kelly L., Goodson, Patricia, Pruitt, B. E., Buhi, Eric, Davis-Gunnels, Emily, Journal of School Health


Instructional materials such as school curricula shape and organize both content and purpose of educational efforts. Typically, curricula accomplish these educational tasks by presenting only certain topics (in a certain amount) and completely (or partially) neglecting others. Coverage and omission of content communicate to educators and learners what curriculum developers believe is worth spending time to learn and what is too trivial to address. In this manner, content and structure are useful indicators of curriculum authors' values and world views. (1,2)

Health and sexuality educators have learned much about curriculum authors' world views from systematic content analyses of school-based sexuality curricula. Analysts have documented indicators of nonscientific, biased, or pedagogically unsound values. Some indicators include the inadequate time dedicated to covering specific topics, (3,4) citing outdated sources, (5) using noninteractive educational methods, (3) omitting basic anatomy information, excluding discussions of sexual orientation and sexual harassment, (6-8) and reinforcing gender biases in the text or illustrations. (6,8) Each problem communicates, to learners, well-defined assumptions about factual evidence, gender and sexual orientation differences, and best pedagogical strategies for teaching human sexuality.

This review provides new information regarding sexuality curricula content, as it focuses specifically on materials used in abstinence-only-until-marriage programs. It assesses content, methods, and overall quality of 21 curricula. The review is one component of a statewide, multiphase evaluation of abstinence-only-until-marriage programs in Texas (begun in 2000). Schools, program developers, and evaluators will find such information useful for comparisons, selection, and improved evaluations of abstinence education materials.

METHODS

Selection Criteria

Researchers identified curricula for this review in 3 stages: first, by examining abstinence programs' proposals for funding, which included curricula proposed for use; second, by interviewing and surveying program directors and instructors of abstinence education; and third, by searching the Internet and resource lists for other, previously unidentified curricula, in addition to those being used in Texas. This 3-stage process led to the identification and purchase of 64 curricula.

While the review process examined all 64 curricula, this paper details the findings for 21 curricula that met 2 criteria: (1) designed for school-based use with middle school grades (fifth to eighth) or middle school-aged audiences (9-13 years of age) and (2) presented the abstinence message in at least 40% of its content. Researchers excluded from this paper curricula designed for after-school or community-based programs, elementary or high school use, and parents or adult audiences, and curricula that focused/covered the abstinence message in less than 40% of its overall content (for instance, parenting or character education curricula). The decision to focus on materials designed for school-based use and that had at least 40% of the content dedicated to the abstinence-only-until-marriage message was, mainly, pragmatic: materials containing much less than half of their topic focusing on abstinence may not be as useful to Title V programs. The 40% cutoff and school-based standard allowed the inclusion in this review of most of the materials identified and the exclusion of curricula that focused--mostly--on other topics such as parenting or character education.

Rating Instrument

Researchers developed an instrument to structure the assessment of each curriculum. The development occurred in 4 consecutive phases. The first phase consisted of 4 focus groups with abstinence program personnel. Focus groups with abstinence education staff were conducted because they constitute the target consumer group for the reviewed materials, and their viewpoint regarding characteristics of the curricula added valuable insights to the review/analysis. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited article

A Review of 21 Curricula for Abstinence-Only-until-Marriage Programs
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this article
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.