Date of Graduation

Spring 2014


Master of Science in Nursing



Committee Chair

Rhea Felicilda


Over 4,000 women die of cervical cancer each year in the United States alone (National Cancer Institute [NCI], n.d.). Through appropriate prevention and screening methods, cervical cancer is a highly preventable disease. College-age females, have the highest prevalence of human papilloma virus (HPV), which is the number one risk factor for developing cervical cancer. However, statistics show women of this age do not undergo screening as recommended. Utilizing a descriptive qualitative design, this study aimed to gain a better understanding of the barriers and motivators/facilitators college-age females face with regards to cervical cancer screening and prevention. A semi-structured focus group interview was conducted with six female university students, 21 years of age. Two main themes, barriers and motivators/facilitators and associated subthemes were identified through thematic data analysis. College-age females face barriers including: poor knowledge of HPV, perceived low risk, and provider issues. Maternal influence, followed by provider cues, was reported as the most significant motivator/facilitator to the uptake of screening. The information gleaned from this study demonstrates the need for further research, development, and implementation of educational and prevention programs on college campuses to further support and encourage positive health promotion behaviors of college-age females.


cervical cancer, cervical cancer screening, cervical cancer screening guidelines, barriers, college-age females

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© Candace Chantel Roland

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