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Date of Award
Bachelor of Science (BS)
Department of Health Sciences
Background: Teens are considered a vulnerable population in regards to intimate partner violence with reported rates of 1 in 11 high school students being physically hurt by a significant other. Educational programs have been developed for teens to promote healthy relationships. This research examines whether “Unequal Partners: Teaching about Power, Consent and Healthy Relationships” by Sue Montfort and Peggy Brick provides relevant, engaging information to educate high school students on the importance of healthy relationships.
Methodology: Students at Harrisonburg High School were invited to attend a voluntary program consisting of “Unequal Partners” lessons during extended learning times. The program consisted of a pilot sample of three lessons from the “Unequal Partners” curriculum, one lesson per week for three consecutive weeks. Students completed surveys at baseline and following the final lesson. Following the program, a sample of students were surveyed in order to assess attendance barriers.
Results: Pre-test and post-test data revealed that knowledge scores increased from 64.58% to 83.33% after implementation of the “Unequal Partners” lessons. Additionally, attitudes of students toward the program were largely positive. The mean score for all 8 items measured using the 5-point Likert scale was 4.57. The post program survey determined that academic obligations and lack of advertisement were main reasons for low attendance for the program.
Discussion: The pilot of the “Unequal Partners” curriculum at Harrisonburg High School shows promise successful in increasing student knowledge on healthy relationships, communication skills and helpful resources.
Kowalk, Katherine, "Unequal Partners: A Pilot Evaluation in Harrisonburg High School" (2018). Senior Honors Projects, 2010-current. 589.