Date of Award

5-6-2009

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Education (Ded)

Department

Professional Studies in Education

First Advisor

George R. Bieger, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Cathy C. Kaufman, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

Linda R. Klingaman, Ph.D.

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to determine the training effects on school personnel’s knowledge, attitudes, comfort, and confidence levels toward educating students about HIV/AIDS in Pennsylvania. The following four research questions were explored: (a) What is the knowledge, attitudes, confidence, and comfort levels of school personnel regarding the teaching of HIV/AIDS to school aged children?; (b) How do HIV/AIDS trainings affect the knowledge, attitude, confidence, and comfort levels of school personnel?; (c) What extent do the demographics of the school personnel influence their knowledge, attitude, confidence, and comfort levels in teaching HIV/AIDS?; (d) Can knowledge of HIV/AIDS predict confidence, attitudes, and comfort levels? The subjects (N=341) included in this study were part of the “HIV Update: A Workshop for Educators” sponsored by the Pennsylvania Department of Education. These trainings were made available to school personnel across the state of Pennsylvania during a three year period. Data was gathered from pre- and post-tests and included measures that targeted subjects’ knowledge, attitudes, comfort levels, and confidence levels associated with HIV/AIDS. Survey questions were analyzed using descriptive statistics, paired t-test, one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA), Tukey post hoc analysis, and the bivariate regression analysis. The results of this study indicate that participation in six-hour HIV update trainings had a statistically significant positive effect on increasing school personnel’s comfort, confidence, and knowledge levels. It was further determined the trainings improved participants’ attitudes toward individuals with HIV/AIDS. Increasing participants’ knowledge of HIV/AIDS was also shown to predict confidence, attitudes, and comfort levels of school personnel. This study indicates that HIV/AIDS update trainings should be a priority for school personnel in order to increase their knowledge, comfort, confidence, and attitudes in addressing the needs of students and their families in an appropriate educational setting.

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