Effectiveness of abstinence-only intervention in middle school teens

Am J Health Behav. Sep-Oct 2005;29(5):423-34. doi: 10.5555/ajhb.2005.29.5.423.


Objectives: To examine effectiveness of abstinence-until-marriage curriculum on knowledge, beliefs, efficacy, intentions, and behavior.

Methods: Nonrandomized control trial involving 2069 middle school students with a 5-month follow-up.

Results: Intervention students reported increases in knowledge and abstinence beliefs, but decreases in intentions to have sex and to use condoms. Intervention did not influence sexual initiation or condom use; however, intervention students who had sex during the evaluation period reported fewer sexual episodes and fewer partners than did controls.

Conclusions: Abstinence-until-marriage interventions can influence knowledge, beliefs, and intentions, and among sexually experienced students, may reduce the prevalence of casual sex. Reduction in condom use intentions merits further study to determine long-term implications.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Female
  • Health Promotion / organization & administration*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Multivariate Analysis
  • Program Evaluation*
  • School Health Services / organization & administration*
  • Sexual Abstinence / statistics & numerical data*