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Psychological responses to information about human papillomavirus and cervical cancer: methods of evaluating print materials

Lloyd, G.; (2012) Psychological responses to information about human papillomavirus and cervical cancer: methods of evaluating print materials. Doctoral thesis, UCL (University College London). Green open access

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Abstract

Learning about human papillomavirus (HPV) has been identified as a possible source of negative affect in women, but the extent and nature of these emotions is unclear, along with whether they are associated with negative attitudes and behaviours (particularly with respect to HPV vaccination). The goal of this thesis is to examine the psychological impact of human papillomavirus (HPV) information using measures of knowledge, behavioural intentions, mood, attitudes and implicit associations. Existing literature was reviewed to examine a range of methods and outcomes suitable for use. Study 1 examined responses to health information in adolescent-aged women using a randomised between-participants design, and was carried out in a classroom setting. Participants given information about HPV and cervical cancer showed strong interest in future vaccination and did not display any more anxiety (as measured by the short form of State Trait Anxiety Index; STAI) than those participants given alternative control information. Three further studies adapted and refined this method for use with older women of university-going age in one-on-one testing sessions. These studies employed an enhanced range of outcomes, many of which were administered as repeated measures, and although showed positive evaluations of HPV material, strong behavioural effects were more difficult to elicit. Again few effects of anxiety were observed between information conditions. Implicit evaluations of the concept of ‘cancer’ were also examined using a computer-based Implicit Association Test, which showed some evidence of changes in associations following information exposure. Correlates of changes in implicit associations were also examined, with some relationships shown with behaviour and knowledge uptake but not anxiety or attitudes.

Type:Thesis (Doctoral)
Title:Psychological responses to information about human papillomavirus and cervical cancer: methods of evaluating print materials
Open access status:An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language:English
UCL classification:UCL > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Institute of Epidemiology and Health Care > Epidemiology and Public Health

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