Student Perspectives on Internal and External Factors Influencing Vulnerability to Risk-Taking Behaviour among Girls in Public Day Secondary Schools in Kiambaa, Kiambu County, Kenya



Determinants, Kiambaa Sub-County, Risk-taking Behaviour, Secondary School Girls, Vulnerability


The study investigated internal and external determinants of vulnerability to risk-taking behavior (RTB) among female students in public day secondary schools (PDSS) in Kiambaa, Kiambu County, Kenya. This was due to the high levels of RTB among secondary school girls that had been reported. The study integrated two theories, problem behaviour theory and empowerment theory. It employed a descriptive survey methodology. Using proportional stratified random sampling and purposive sampling procedures 96 girls participated in the study. A pilot study involving 10 students from Kiambu Sub-County was conducted to assess content and construct validity. Cronbach's alpha (α = 0.7) ensured internal consistency and reliability of variables. Data was collected through questionnaires and interviews, analysed using SPSS version 24 for quantitative data and content analysis for qualitative data, and presented via tables and figures. The findings revealed various RTB among girls, including unprotected sex, prostitution, drug use, abortion, theft, and fighting. RTB determinants encompassed factors like parental divorce, absenteeism, peer pressure, financial hardship, and lack of role models, excessive idle time, societal influences, and declining values. In conclusion, this study highlights the existence of RTB among girls in PDSS and underscores the complexity of factors influencing these behaviours. To effectively address RTB, a comprehensive approach that considers both internal and external factors is essential.


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How to Cite

Mwangi, L. N., Okemwa, P., & Mwangi, S. W. (2024). Student Perspectives on Internal and External Factors Influencing Vulnerability to Risk-Taking Behaviour among Girls in Public Day Secondary Schools in Kiambaa, Kiambu County, Kenya. African Journal of Empirical Research, 5(1), 157–172.