Evaluation of an assessment instrument for a sexual health curriculum for nurses and midwifery students in Tanzania: The sexual health education professionals scale (SHEPS)

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


We assessed the structure and content of a new scale, the SHEPS, to assess change in sexual health confidence, knowledge and attitudes in nursing and midwifery students following an intervention (a 2-day standardized workshop on sexual health). Students were 78 Tanzanian nursing and midwifery students attending a University of Health Sciences, who were assessed immediately before and after the workshop on matched pre- and post-workshop questionnaires. Data confirmed significant changed pre- and post-test on knowledge and confidence on topics taught in the workshop, with the effect also extending to some topics not or minimally covered, suggesting that there was a general increase in confidence and a perception of increased knowledge following the workshop. There was power to detect differences even with a moderate sized matched sample. Correlations between knowledge and confidence on the same content items were between 0.52 and 0.63, suggesting that respondents could clearly distinguish between knowledge and confidence. There were no significant differences pre- and post-test on several controversial cultural and religious attitudes including on abortion and non-vaginal penetrative sex. Alpha coefficients were 0.93 for pre-test and 0.90 for post-test. This field test demonstrates the preliminary appropriateness of the SHEPS as a tool for evaluating sexual health interventions in health care workers.


  • M. W. Ross
  • S. Leshabari
  • B. R.S. Rosser
  • M. Trent
  • L. Mgopa
  • J. Wadley
  • N. Kohli
  • A. Agardh
External organisations
  • Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences
  • University of Minnesota
  • Johns Hopkins University
  • Lincoln University
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Nursing


  • Africa, Evaluation, Sexual health, Tanzania
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)152-156
Number of pages5
JournalApplied Nursing Research
Publication statusPublished - 2018 Apr 1
Publication categoryResearch