Doctoral Dissertations

Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy



Major Professor

Thomas N. Turner

Committee Members

Lester Knight, Bruce Wheeler, George Harris Jr.


This study examined school-related programs developed to prevent teen pregnancy over a fifty year period from 1950 to 2000. The first programs to reduce unprotected intercourse were implemented in U.S. schools in the early 1900's. Since that time, few attempts have been made to evaluate program effectiveness. This has created serious limitations in the efforts of schools to reduce unwanted teen pregnancies. While there exists an extensive body of research and literature that describes efforts aimed at the teen who faces as unintended pregnancy, the more general field of teen pregnancy prevention has not been explored as extensively. This study traces the evolution of school-related efforts to prevent teen pregnancy over five decades. The study focuses on K-12 public school programs in the United States from 1950-2000. Three criteria were used to limit the programs to be reviewed: (1) interventions had to be implemented in schools, (2) the research had to have been published or accepted for publication in a peer-reviewed journal, and (3) the research had to measure reported sexual or contraceptive behaviors or their outcomes which included pregnancy rates, birth rates, or STD rates.

Files over 3MB may be slow to open. For best results, right-click and select "save as..."