Scenarios in HIV/AIDS prevention research: insights from literature and research in Botswana
Magowe, Mabel K.M.
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The difficulties in communication about sexuality- related matters in HIV prevention require appropri- ate research approaches. Scenarios can be useful in qualitative, quantitative research methods and inter- ventions related to sensitive cognitive issues of human sexuality. This paper presents an analysis of the use of scenarios in HIV/AIDS prevention research from the literature and empirical evidence. Examples of scenario-based instrument development research studies in safer sex communication for the prevention of HIV/AID by Kalichman (2000) and Magowe (2006) are provided. A computer-based search of articles addressing the use of case scenarios in research was conducted on Google and Google scholar, using the following search terms: “case scenarios”, “scenarios in research”, case scenarios in safer sex negotiation: “case scenarios in safer sex communication”, “case sce- narios in dyadic communication”, “partner commu- nication”, “case research”, “vignettes in HIV/AIDS research”, and, “sexuality related vignettes”. Papers included provided the definition, purpose, compo- nents, types of scenarios, use of scenarios in safer sex communication. Examples are drawn from instru- ments development studies using with case scenarios. Twenty-nine documents were retrieved, and eight of these studies addressed the use of scenarios in re- search. Five studies were specifically on HIV preven- tion research, focusing on safer sex communication, negotiation or couple/partner communication. The content of the studies included the definition of sce- narios, case scenarios and vignettes; purpose and use of scenarios in research. Studies showed that scenar- ios are useful in qualitative elicitation of themes and content for instrument development for further quan- titative research. Nursing deals with sensitive and complex cognitive issues in human behavior, and therefore scenario-based research can help develop person-oriented research and interventions while pro- tecting the individual’s privacy and confidentiality.