How do female adolescents prioritise pregnancy protection?: a grounded theory study of contraceptive experiences

Jennifer Lawson Smith

    Research output: ThesisDoctoral Thesis

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    [Truncated abstract] Despite decades of research, development and evaluation of educational and promotional strategies to prevent teenage pregnancy, we have only a limited understanding of the strategies that are most effective and why. Promoting the use of contraception among adolescents is particularly challenging given the range of individual, socio-cultural and contextual factors that interact to determine whether contraception is used or not and the type of method/s chosen. While the predominance of quantitative research conducted in this area has provided a valuable basis for programs aiming to ameliorate known risk factors of unprotected intercourse, such efforts remain insular in focus as they ignore the broader influences on adolescent sexual and reproductive health, including factors that lead some to transition into a maternal role earlier than that prescribed by conventional norms (Marston & King, 2006). These existing limitations provided the impetus for the present study. The current research assumed that in order to uncover the meanings that teenagers ascribed to contraception and how they interpreted their experiences in various contexts, the researcher needed to see their experiences as they saw them. An inductive methodological framework using the classic or Glaserian approach to grounded theory was employed to explore and theorise key differences in pregnancy risk and underlying disparities in contraceptive use in a group of sexually active Australian adolescent females. Glaser’s (1978; 1992) approach follows a systematic and rigorous process of discovery to the participants’ main concern (the basic social problem or core category) and their responding behaviour. This was chosen to enable the emergence of an explanatory model of human social processes that remained grounded in the participants’ realities...
    Original languageEnglish
    QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
    Publication statusUnpublished - 2011

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