Title

Adolescents' questions about sex.

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

12-1-1983

Abstract

Male and female Anglo, Hispanic and Native American adolescents from urban and rural areas were given a chance to ask anonymous questions about sex. These questions were then used as the bases for subsequent presentations on sex education. The most popular categories of questions were reproduction, sexuality, and contraception, followed by anatomy, venereal disease, pregnancy, abortion, vocabulary, hygiene, and other diseases. Younger adolescents asked significantly more questions in most categories than older ones. Girls asked significantly more total questions and ones concerning pregnancy, contraception, and anatomy than boys. Students attending rural schools asked more questions about venereal disease than those in urban schools, but no other main effects of urban-rural location were found. There were no ethnic differences found. The adolescents' questions ranged from sophisticated to poignantly ignorant, suggesting that the strategy of adapting sex education sessions to fit the concerns of the specific adolescents involved might be valuable.

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