Date of Conferral



Doctor of Public Health (DrPH)


Public Health


John Oswald


Efforts to reduce the spread of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and find innovative alternatives to condom use are important public health challenges. While the incidence of HIV is leveling off among some populations, it is escalating in other populations such as young African American men who have sex with men (MSM). Guided by the health belief model (HBM) and the AIDS risk reduction model (ARRM), this quantitative, cross-sectional study sought to use multiple linear regression, binary logistic regression, and Fisher's exact test to determine how perceived susceptibility, as measured by the AIDS Health Belief Scale (AHBS), and labeling of unprotected receptive anal intercourse (URAI) risk predicted the preference for prevention products and the number of self-reported sexual activities among MSM who seek sexual partners on the Internet. This study also sought to determine any ethnic differences in the preference for prevention products among these men. Due to the limited sample size (N = 19), there were no significant relationships between the independent variables (i.e., AHBS Score, URAI Risk, or ethnicity) and dependent variables (i.e., product preference or sexual activity). Moreover, covariates of age and alcohol/drug use were not significant in this study. The implications of positive social change include new insights into designing culturally-sensitive, Internet-based, HIV interventions for hard-to-reach and hidden populations that protect their privacy.