Sex education for individuals who have a developmental disability : the need for assessment
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This study was an evaluation of the sexual knowledge of individuals who have '"a developmental disability and the effect of sex education. This was also a pilot study involving the evaluation of the Socio-Sexual Knowledge and Attitudes Assessment Tool (SSKAAT; Griffiths & Lunsky, in press). This tool is a revised version of the Socio-Sexual Knowledge and Attitudes Test (SSKAT; Wish, Fiechtl McCombs, & Edmonson, 1980). Thirty-two individuals participated in the study (20 males and 12 females), who were receiving supports from local community agencies. Participants were assessed using the SSKAAT and SSKAT in an initial assessment and in a 6-week follow-up. Sixteen participants received a 6-week sex education program, Life Horizons I and II (Kempton & Stanfield, 1988a, 1988b), between the assessments, while 16 participants served as a control group. It was found that sex education was successful at increasing knowledge regarding sexuality, as demonstrated by increased scores on both the SSKAT and SSKAAT. However, the current study did not demonstrate any significant effect of gender on knowledge about sexuality. It was also found that IQ did not have a significant effect on knowledge regarding sexuality. The present study found the SSKAAT to be very reliable, with test-retest reliabilities ranging from .87 to .99. This appeared to be an improvement over the original SSKAT, whose reliability ranged from .72 to .90. Furthennore, the revised SSKAAT was fOlmd to provide a much more in-depth assessment of sexual knowledge and attitudes for individuals who have a developmental disability.