The Secret of Seven Stones: Applying intervention mapping for the development of an intergenerational, online game to prevent HIV/STI and pregnancy in middle-school youth

Laura Ceglio, The University of Texas School of Public Health

Abstract

Background: Early adolescent sexual behavior is a significant public health problem in the United States. Parental influence can be effective in delaying sexual debut; yet, parents often lack the skills to communicate about sex-related topics. Intergenerational games offer a solution as an intrinsically motivating, convenient modality. The Secret of Seven Stones (SSS) is an online intergenerational adventure game that provides life skills training and an innovative channel for parent and youth (11-14 years) communication on sexual health topics. ^ Methods: Intervention Mapping informed the application of behavioral theory and data from literature review, qualitative needs assessment and usability testing to develop the 18-level SSS game and parent website. In-home pilot testing of two levels was conducted over a two-week period with youth-parent dyads (n=10) to determine feasibility of SSS. ^ Results: Based on needs assessment results, matrices of change were created and theoretical methods and practical applications were selected to develop intervention materials. Pilot testing indicated feasibility of proof-of-concept for in-home use. Parents and youth rated SSS as understandable (≥90%), credible (≥70%), and helpful in making healthy choices (≥80%). Ratings indicated need for improvement in areas of ease of use (40-50%) and parental acceptability (29%). Qualitative data supported these findings and informed design modifications to improve the parent and child experience. ^ Conclusion: Intervention Mapping provided a useful framework for developing a home-based intergenerational sexual health game. Results of pilot testing indicate feasibility of SSS and need for further in-home testing to assess impact of SSS on sexual health antecedents and parent-child communication.^

Subject Area

Behavioral psychology|Middle school education|Public health

Recommended Citation

Ceglio, Laura, "The Secret of Seven Stones: Applying intervention mapping for the development of an intergenerational, online game to prevent HIV/STI and pregnancy in middle-school youth" (2015). Texas Medical Center Dissertations (via ProQuest). AAI1597020.
http://digitalcommons.library.tmc.edu/dissertations/AAI1597020

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