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Getting Men to Explore Safer Sex Responsibility: The Use of Photovoice in Health Promotion Research

By: , , & Published: 2017 | Product: SAGE Research Methods Cases Part 2
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The incidence and prevalence of HIV/AIDS and other sexually transmitted infections continues to increase among young, heterosexual men and women in the United States. Although research studies examine the reasons why these young people are not engaging in safe sex behavior, many have not explored factors beyond individual behaviors. Much of the current research focuses on young women, for the most part leaving men out of the equation. In this study, a photovoice methodology was used to examine social norms, media messaging, and perceptions of responsibility surrounding safe sex practices, specifically condom use, among male, heterosexual, undergraduate students. Results showed that college-aged men are still prioritizing pregnancy prevention over disease prevention, which leads to assumptions that their female partners are on birth control and they do not need to use condoms. Participants pointed to media messages and condom placement that support women's responsibility for safer sex and condom negotiation. Future health promotion research and practice should focus on including men in the design and implementation process to address social norms and increase their sense of responsibility.

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