Sep 22, 2014


Intervention packets were designed to impact adolescents’ contraceptive behavior, and their attitudes towards contraceptive use.  Results of an experimental evaluation that assessed the impact of providing three different types of intervention packets (self-efficacy packet, anticipated regret packet, and a packet that included a combination of self-efficacy and anticipated regret) indicated that none of the information packets had a significant impact on either adolescents’ contraceptive behavior, or their attitudes towards contraceptive use compared with a control condition that was provided factual information about contraception.


Target population: Adolescents

Information packets that included reading- and writing-based tasks were developed to improve adolescents’ use of, and attitudes towards using contraceptives. Three different sets of packets were developed for the intervention: (1) a four-page packet that was designed to enhance feelings of control over contraceptive use (self-efficacy condition), (2) a five-page packet of vignettes designed to enhance feelings of anticipated regret over not using contraceptives properly (anticipated regret condition), and (3) a packet that included the materials from both the self-efficacy and anticipated regret conditions.


Brown, K.E., Hurst, K.M., & Arden, M.A. (2011). Improving adolescent contraceptive use: Evaluation of a theory-driven classroom-based intervention. Psychology, Health, & Medicine, 16(2), 141-155.

Evaluated population: A total of 414 students across five schools in the United Kingdom participated in the evaluation. On average participants were 17 years old (age range: 14-19), and just over half of the participants were male (53 percent), and half of the participants were not virgins (51 percent) at baseline. Approximately 40 percent of the participants either withdrew from the intervention or failed to complete the posttest and follow-up assessments. Accordingly, intent to treat (ITT) analyses were conducted.

Approach: Students were randomly assigned to one of four conditions (control group; self-efficacy group; anticipated regret group; or self-efficacy combined with anticipated regret group). Students within each of the experimental conditions received information packets designed to enhance their perceptions of efficacy in using contraceptives, anticipated regret over failing to use contraceptives, or a combination of the two materials, while  the control group received a four-page packet that gave factual information about contraceptives.  Data were collected one week prior to the intervention (pretest), immediately after the intervention (posttest), and four weeks following the intervention (follow-up).  The outcome variables measured at each time point were contraceptive behavior, intention to use contraceptives, self-efficacy (i.e., confidence in effectively using contraceptives), anticipated regret (e.g., regret following non-use of contraceptives, and feelings after having sex when contraceptives were not used properly) control beliefs (i.e., external and internal factors that influence contraceptive use), condom outcome beliefs, pill outcome beliefs, and normative beliefs about contraceptive use.

Results: There was no significant impact of any of the experimental groups on any of the outcome variables relative to the informational control group. Moreover, there were no significant interactions between intervention group and student characteristics, such as gender, virginity, or initial intention to use contraceptives.



Brown, K.E., Hurst, K.M., & Arden, M.A. (2011). Improving adolescent contraceptive use: Evaluation of a theory-driven classroom-based intervention. Psychology, Health, & Medicine, 16(2), 141-155.

KEYWORDS: Adolescents (12-17), Youth (16+), Young Adults (18-24), High School, Males and Females (Co-ed), School-based, Condom Use and Contraception.

Program information last updated 09/22/14