Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



First Advisor

Dr. Cecelia G. Grindel - Chair


Prostate cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer and the second leading cause of cancer death among men in the United States. In African American men, the disease is typically detected at a more advanced stage and mortality is twice the rate of Caucasian men. However, African American men are less likely to participate in prostate cancer screening. The purpose of this descriptive study was to assess the relationship between health beliefs, knowledge, and selected demographic variables (age, income and education) and a man’s decision to participate in prostate cancer screening among African American men dwelling in rural communities. The conceptual framework for the study was the Health Belief Model. Participants for the study were recruited through contacts within rural communities within west central Alabama. A convenience sample of 90 African American men between the ages of 40-82 years of age was recruited. Analysis of the research data indicated that there was a statistically significant difference in motivation (health belief), knowledge, and age of men who participated in prostate cancer screening compared to those who did not participate in prostate cancer screening. Forward logistic regression was used to determine which independent variables [health beliefs (benefits, barriers, motivation); knowledge; age; income; and education] were predictors of prostate cancer screening. Results indicated the overall model of one predictor, motivation, was statistically reliable in predicting prostate cancer screening participation among the rural dwelling men surveyed. The model accounted for 15 to 20% of the variance. The sensitivity of the model in predicting those who would participate in prostate cancer screening was 85%. The odds of those who would participate in prostate cancer screening were 1.3 times greater for each one unit increase in motivation. Results indicate a need for more educational and motivational interventions to promote informed decision making by African American men in regards to prostate screening activities. These interventions need to be culturally sensitive and geared toward African American men, specifically those living in rural areas.

Included in

Nursing Commons