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Durham Research Online
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A school-based randomized controlled trial of peer-led sex education in England.

Stephenson, J. M. and Oakley, A. and Johnson, A. M. and Forrest, S. and Strange, V. and Charleston, S. and Black, S. and Copas, A. and Petruckevitch, A. and Babiker, A. (2003) 'A school-based randomized controlled trial of peer-led sex education in England.', Controlled clinical trials., 24 (5). pp. 643-657.


This article discusses the design of an ongoing cluster-randomized trial comparing two forms of school-based sex education in terms of educational process and sexual health outcomes. Twenty-nine schools in southern England have been randomized to either peer-led sex education or to continue with their traditional teacher-led sex education. The primary objective is to determine which form of sex education is more effective in promoting young people's sexual health. The trial includes an unusually detailed evaluation of the process of sex education as well as the outcomes. The sex education programs were delivered in school to pupils ages 13–14 years who are being followed until ages 19–20. Major trial outcomes are unprotected sexual intercourse and regretted intercourse by age 16 and cumulative incidence of abortion by ages 19–20. We discuss the rationale behind various aspects of the design, including ethical issues and practical challenges of conducting a randomized trial in schools, data linkage for key outcomes to reduce bias, and integrating process and outcome measures to improve the interpretation of findings.

Item Type:Article
Keywords:School sex education, Peer-led intervention, Randomized controlled trial, Sexual intercourse, Contraception, Condom use.
Full text:Full text not available from this repository.
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Date accepted:No date available
Date deposited:No date available
Date of first online publication:October 2003
Date first made open access:No date available

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