Date of Award


Degree Type


University or Center

Atlanta University (AU)


School of Education

Degree Name



The purpose of this study was to determine the influence of a structured group experience on the knowledge about and attitudes toward selected aspects of human sexuality of an experimental and control group living in a residential-institutional setting.

Hypotheses Null hypotheses one through eight focused on knowledge, and attitudes regarding human sexuality, depersonalizing stereotypes, body appearance, sexual intimacy, pornographic materials, fantasizing experiences, and material regarding masturbation.

Procedure The research design was a two group, randomized subjects, post test-only design. The sample of forty Black women were at least sixty years old. The dependent variable was a five-day workshop. The instrument used in this study was the Sexual Issues and Concerns Inventory For Older Women (SICIFOW).

Conclusions 1. Exposure to sexual. knowledge that focuses on information concerning the need for sexual intimacy, and masturbation as an acceptable means of sexual expression in a structured group setting significantly increased the level of knowledge of Black older women.

2. Exposure to a structured group experience that emphasized sexual attitudes (i.e., general attitudes toward aspects of human sexuality such as negative depersonalizing stereotypes, pornographic materials, and fantasizing experiences that might suggest aspects of human sexuality) produced significantly more liberal attitudes toward sex and sexually explicit materials.

3. Exposure to a structured group experience, did not influence Black older women's level of acceptance of their own body images.

4. Differential effects were observed regarding the sexual attitudes and knowledge of Black older women when selected participants were viewed individually. Participants exposed to the treatment who obtained low and near-the-mean scores, tended to exhibit more knowledge, more liberal, and possibly more permissive attitudes toward sex and sexually explicit materials.

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