Gender role heuristics used by adolescent boys when negotiating sexual practices of a heterosexual nature.
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The aim of this study was to ascertain whether or not South African adolescent boys between the ages of 16 and 18 make use of heuristics when thinking about heterosexual relationships. Currently, some of the greatest challenges facing South Africa are that of the HIV/AIDS pandemic and the high rates of violence, especially against women and children. These issues are closely linked with cognitions about masculinity and the male and female gender roles in men and boys. The methodology was qualitative and focus groups were utilized as the method of data collection. The results of this study indicate that adolescent boys do make use of a variety of heuristics and also engage in the process of splitting when thinking about heterosexual relationships. Keywords: Masculinity, adolescents, heuristics, gender roles, heterosexual relationships, HIV/AIDS