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Abstract

The efficacy and differential effects of specialized (S) and traditional (T) AIDS education programs on cognitive, behavioral, and psychological outcomes were investigated. The sample consisted of 858 impoverished African-American and Latina women (S = 448, T = 410). At baseline, women in the traditional group reported significantly higher distress, greater knowledge of AIDS, and less problem-focused coping. Significant improvements over the 2-week intervention interval were found for participants of both AIDS education programs for appraisal of threat, concerns, knowledge, and attitudes about AIDS, emotion-focused coping, number of sexual partners, IV and non-IV drug use, depression, and distress. However, multivariate analysis indicated that the traditional group had slightly better posttest scores on concerns, emotionfocused coping, knowledge of AIDS, and number of partners than the specialized group. The specialized group reported greater use of problem-focused coping. These differences do not detract from the substantial improvement found for both groups, but they do reinforce the conclusion that the specialized program was not more effective than its standard counterpart. © 1993 John Wiley & Sons, Inc.