This research project involved the development and evaluation of a teacher-led media literacy education (MLE) program to promote sexual health among middle school students.
Phase I of this project included the development of a prototype of the program and conducting a study to access program feasibility and the potential for achieving positive student outcomes. Phase II of this project included revising and finalizing the program including the addition of two web-based modules to supplement the program, translating the in-person teacher training to a web-based teacher training, and conducting a RCT to evaluate program effectiveness.
Comprehensive sexual health education has been found to have a positive impact on adolescent sexual health outcomes, but most sexual health education curricula do not address the impact of media on sexual beliefs and behaviors. Exposure to unhealthy media messages that normalize or glorify risk behaviors is related to early and risky sexual behaviors in adolescence. Media literacy education can help students critically analyze media messages about sex and relationships and promote healthy beliefs and behaviors.
Scull, T. M., Kupersmidt, J. B., Malik, C. V., & Morgan-Lopez, A. A. (2018). Using media literacy education for adolescent sexual health promotion in middle school: Randomized control trial of Media Aware. Journal of Health Communication, 23(12), 1051-1063. http://doi.org/10.1080/10810730.2018.1548669
Scull, T. M., Malik, C. V., & Kupersmidt, J. B. (2018). Understanding the unique role of media message processing in predicting adolescent sexual behavior intentions in the USA. Journal of Children and Media, 12(3), 258-274. http://doi.org/10.1080/17482798.2017.1403937
Scull, T.M., Malik, C.V., Kupersmidt, J.B., & Moallem, M. (2016). Rethinking sexuality education: A web-based solution. In Proceedings of Society for Information Technology & Teacher Education International Conference 2016 (pp. 2344-2348). Chesapeake, VA: Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education (AACE).
Scull, T. M., Malik, C. V., & Kupersmidt, J. B. (2014). A media literacy education approach to teaching adolescents comprehensive sexual health education. The Journal of Media Literacy Education, 6(1), 1. https://digitalcommons.uri.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1131&context=jmle