A multimedia‐based approach to increasing communication and the level of AIDS knowledge within families

Isiaah Crawford*, Leonard A. Jason, Noreen Riordan, Joy Kaufman, Doreen Salina, Lisa Sawalski, Fung Chu Ho, Edwin Zolik

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations


The print and electronic media have been used effectively in the past to assist individuals in altering negative health behaviors and attitudes associated with obesity, stress, hypertension, and smoking. This article presents the use of a multimedia‐based, health promotion strategy targeted toward AIDS prevention within the family unit. In November of 1988, for 6 consecutive days, 5‐ to 10‐minute segments addressing AIDS and the family were televised on the noon and 9 p.m. news broadcasts of a major television station in the midwest. One hundred fifty‐one 8th‐grade students and their parents were randomly assigned to one of two experimental conditions. The intervention consisted of prompting participants to view the broadcasts and giving them printed material regarding AIDS and how the topic could be discussed within the family. This AIDS educational newspaper supplement paralleled the content of the daily telecasts. All participants completed questionnaires approximately 1 week prior to and after the media program. Controls were not given the prompt or provided the supplements. Children who were encouraged to watch the program viewed significantly more of the broadcasts, talked more about sexual issues within their families, and were more knowledgeable about AIDS than controls. Parents of children identified as at risk for HIV infection had more difficulty discussing AIDS with their children than parents of children not at risk.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)361-373
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Community Psychology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 1990

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology


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