The purpose of this study was to conduct an educational diagnosis for AIDS prevention among school age adolescents. The Health Belief Model was used as a conceptual framework to analyze adolescent beliefs that may influence HIV risk behavior. A statewide, stratified random sample of 7th, 9th, and 11th grade students was drawn during the Spring of 1988. Results reveal that adolescents' knowledge of AIDS and HIV transmission is superficial. Many adolescents hold serious misconceptions that could lead to unintentional risk behavior. High levels of fear were reported, yet students clearly misunderstood the seriousness of AIDS. Barriers to preventive actions were identified. Recommendations are made to increase the effectiveness of school-based HIV education.