It is clear that many sources of evidence have contributed to our grasp of what does and does not work in HIV/AIDS education. Despite this, there has recently been a distinct move to narrow the evidence of success in this field to experimental and comparative work, with randomized controlled trials positioned as the `gold standard'. Here we take up the question of what constitutes evidence in HIV/AIDS education. We explore the social and historical factors which `privilege' certain kinds of evidence above others and question whether there exists but one way of understanding what works best in HIV/AIDS education. We draw expressly upon earlier insights and experience in educational evaluation per se and put a case that evidence gleaned through a range of research methods is more useful than exclusive reliance on experimental and comparative work.
Health Education Research (1999) 14 (4): 461-471 [doi:10.1093/her/14.4.461]