Year of Publication

2012

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Document Type

Master's Thesis

College

Education

Department

Kinesiology and Health Promotion

First Advisor

Dr. Melody Noland

Abstract

This study examined the knowledge, sources of information, reasons for and against Gardasil® uptake, and possible relationships between unhealthy behaviors and vaccination for undergraduate college females at a public university. Utilizing an online survey, 2400 random students were emailed as well as recruited through online classes. The final sample size was 516 females. The study determined how many participants had been vaccinated and their rationale for or against vaccination. The majority of study participants were knowledgeable about HPV and Gardasil®. The primary sources of information about HPV and Gardasil® were doctors and television; however parents and friends were also common sources of information. Predictors for HPV inoculation included race, the belief that the vaccine would protect against HPV, alcohol use, and engagement in anal intercourse. Over 50% of participants had received at least one dose of Gardasil®, and 82% had completed the series. The most common rationale for not getting the vaccine, or not completing the vaccination series, was concern about side effects. The most common rationale for completing the vaccination or intending to complete the series was protection from cervical cancer. In conclusion, there is a continued need provide health education about HPV and HPV vaccination for college females.

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