International Journal of Humanities and Social Science

ISSN 2220-8488 (Print), 2221-0989 (Online) 10.30845/ijhss

Knowledge Levels and Misconceptions about HIV/AIDS: What do University Students in Turkey Really Know?
Nalan Linda Fraim

This study examined the knowledge levels and misconceptions of HIV/AIDS among university students (N=1925) in Istanbul Turkey. Almost the entire sample reported hearing about HIV/AIDS; however, the sample had average to moderate levels of knowledge regarding HIV/AIDS. Findings indicate that less than 20% of the sample had misconceptions about HIV/AIDS where 16% believed AIDS was a punishment from God. Sex differences were examined for knowledge levels and misconceptions. Chi-square analyses suggest significant sex differences for HIV/AIDS knowledge levels and misconceptions. Throughout the literature, lack of education and misinformation has been linked with having low knowledge levels, negative attitudes, and existing misconceptions regarding HIV/AIDS. Findings from this study support existing literature. By incorporating sexual and reproductive health courses into the Turkish academic curriculums, beginning at junior high throughout college, it is anticipated that the existing lack of information may improve to better levels and that the misconceptions among university students will be reduced.

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