MPhil study projects

Key considerations in designing a student-centred HIV/Aids course curriculum for a community-based college in Cape Town, South Africa

Student: Chipo Zininga

Country: Zimbabwe

HIV/Aids remains a persistent public health concern in South Africa, significantly impacting the socioeconomic landscape of township communities. HIV/Aids education served as a vital tool in community protection by disseminating information on disease transmission.

In some centres, the suitability of HIV/Aids course curricula for township communities remained unassessed. This study aimed to evaluate the appropriateness of the HIV/Aids course curriculum offered by Health Promoters South Africa (HPSA) in Kayamandi, Stellenbosch. Employing a mixed-methods approach, the study collected data through a questionnaire survey among HPSA basic health course students. The results revealed that most participants were reproductive-age females with limited knowledge of HIV/Aids transmission, though post-training demonstrated improved awareness of preventative measures in caregiving.

Gaps in basic HIV/Aids knowledge and understanding of the virus/disease’s history and origins however persisted. The study recommended curriculum updates to address these deficiencies, advocating for community involvement in the process to better align with local needs and dynamics. Strategies targeting male participation were also suggested to address gender disparities in course attendance.