Date of Defense

Spring 4-19-2004



First Advisor

Susan L. Caulfield, Sociology

Second Advisor

William Fenn, Health and Human Services


AIDS is currently the leading cause of death for women ages 25 to 34. There are 29 million HIV positive women worldwide. Women over 15 make up about 41% of the 44 million people worldwide living with HIV/AIDS in the year 2003, and their numbers only increase as women are the fastest growing risk group associated with HIV/AIDS. Over the course of the epidemic there have been a number of theories attempting to explain why it is that women are at a greater health risk for contracting HIV/AIDS. The literature review that follows discusses the research that has been done in the past about women and HIV/AIDS, focusing on knowledge, perceived risk, and actual behavior. After examination of some of the most significant findings, the author examines the gaps remaining in research on women and HIV/AIDS and proposes research that will expand knowledge in this area.

Access Setting

Honors Thesis-Campus Only