‘Understanding’ as a practical issue in sexual health education for people with intellectual disabilities: A study using two qualitative methods.

Article


Finlay, W. M. L., Rohleder, Poul, Taylor, Natalie and Culfear, Hollie 2015. ‘Understanding’ as a practical issue in sexual health education for people with intellectual disabilities: A study using two qualitative methods. Health Psychology. 34 (4), pp. 328-338.
AuthorsFinlay, W. M. L., Rohleder, Poul, Taylor, Natalie and Culfear, Hollie
Abstract

Objective
Sexual health education is important in addressing the health and social inequalities faced by people with intellectual disabilities. However, provision of health-related advice and education to people with various types and degrees of linguistic and learning difficulties involves addressing complex issues of language and comprehension. This paper reports an exploratory study using two qualitative methods to examine the delivery of sexual health education to people with intellectual disabilities.
Methods
Four video-recordings of sexual health education sessions were collected. Conversation analysis was used to examine in detail how such education occurs as a series of interactions between educators and learners. Interviews with four educators were carried out and analyzed using thematic analysis.
Results
The analysis shows how educators anticipate problems of comprehension and how they respond when there is evidence that a person does not understand the activity or the educational message. This occurs particularly when verbal prompts involve long sentences and abstract concepts. We show a characteristic pattern which arises in these situations, in which both educator and learner jointly produce a superficially correct response.
Conclusions
While interviews allows us some insight into contextual issues, strategy, and aspects of sexual health education which occur outside of the actual teaching sessions, analysis of actual interactions can show us patterns which occur in interactions between educators and learners when comprehension is in question. Addressing how sexual health education is delivered in practice and in detail provides valuable lessons about how such education can be improved.

JournalHealth Psychology
Journal citation34 (4), pp. 328-338
ISSN1930-7810
0278-6133
Year2015
PublisherAmerican Psychological Association
Accepted author manuscript
License
CC BY
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)doi:10.1037/hea0000128
Publication dates
PrintApr 2015
Publication process dates
Deposited27 Jul 2015
Accepted01 Apr 2015
FunderBA/Leverhulme
Anglia Ruskin
Copyright information© 2015 APA This article may not exactly replicate the final version published in the APA journal. It is not the copy of record.
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