The theory of reasoned action (TRA) was employed as a framework for understanding adolescents’ behavior that could put them at risk for contracting AIDS. The TRA focuses on the role of subjective norms and attitudes toward behavior to predict behavioral intentions and risk–avoidance behavior (condom use). Adolescent participants (N = 492) in three groups (8th grade, 11/12th grade, and early college) filled out questionnaires. Results supported Ajzen and Fishbein's contentions regarding the role of attitude and subjective norms, but subjective norms also functioned as a predictor of attitudes. Additional evidence indicated models by gender and sexual experience were different. For sexually active adolescents, attitude was a better predictor of both behavioral intentions and condom use than subjective norms, but for sexually inactive adolescents, subjective norm was a better predictor. For male adolescents, subjective norm was a better predictor of both behavioral intentions and condom use than attitude, but for female adolescents, attitude was a better predictor only of behavioral intention. Implications and directions for future research using the TRA are discussed.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Environmental Chemistry
- Plant Science