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Keywords:

  • health beliefs;
  • women's health;
  • instrument development;
  • theory construction

Abstract

Measurement of beliefs about sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) is important to understanding sexual health behaviors. The purpose of this study was to develop and test the psychometric properties of the Representations of STDs (RoSTD) Scale. The RoSTD was developed to measure young women's representations of STDs, and it is intended to be used to measure beliefs about any of the seven most common STDs. Confirmatory factor analysis indicated a four-factor structure for the 40-item RoSTD: Future Perspective, Cause, Psychosocial Consequence, and Identity. Internal consistency for the subscales (measured for each of seven different STDs) ranged from .67 to .93 and 2-week test–retest correlations ranged from .69 to .90. The RoSTD shows evidence of reliability and validity in young women. © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Res Nurs Health 35:15–29, 2012