Crow, Thomas Books

Dr. Thomas Crow is an independent researcher whose primary interest is youth issues. He holds a Ph.D. in Sociology from The University of North Texas and has worked for the Boys and Girls Clubs of America, studying the effect of membership in youth organizations on delinquency among teenagers.

Designing a Teenage Pregnancy Prevention Program
2006 0-7734-5955-3
Pregnancy rates among teenagers in the United States are substantially higher than among teenagers in other developed countries. This occurs because U.S. teenagers use contraception less than their counterparts in other countries. Over the last quarter-century, programs developed to encourage American teenagers to use contraception have been very limited in their effectiveness.

In 1991, five recognized behavioral theorists came together in a workshop sponsored by the National Institute of Mental Health to develop an approach to curbing the spread of AIDS among high-risk populations. The authors of this book adapted the approach developed in the workshop to arrive at a theory on which they based a new approach to designing teenage pregnancy prevention programs. The new approach and the theory, Behavioral Performance Theory, are described in the book.

The theory holds that three factors are necessary and sufficient for a teenager to use effective contraception. This has two important implications. First, it explains why past programs have been so limited in their effectiveness: Unless all three factors are present, a teenager will not use contraception. Second, it augurs a future in which the effectiveness of teenage pregnancy prevention programs is greatly increased: If all three factors are present, a teenager will use effective contraception.