The pupose of this study is to suggest characteristics which are significant predictors of individuals attitudes toward the teaching of sex education in primary and secondary schools. As the nation faces escalating teen pregnancy, abortion and venereal disease rates, the topic of sex education has become a highly debated issue. Furthermore, the threat AIDS poses to the adolescent community has stimulated new arguments for the inclusion of comprehensive sex education programs in both primary and secondary schools. Numerous statistics indicate that the majority of Americans support sex education, however this support has not resulted in nationwide sex education programs in the public schools. Despite the overwhelming support, comprehensive sex education programs are not being implemented This is primarily due to very vocal opponents who have consistently raised enough question and scrutiny about sex education programs to keep the courses out of primary and secondary schools. This research aims to understand what characteristics are common among proponents and opponents of sex education. The data were obtained from the National Opinion Research Center's (NORC) General Social Survey, from the years 1988 through 1991. The variables tested were selected from the NORC code book, and were chosen on the basis of their relevance to the presented literature and theory. A multiple regression technique was used to test for the effects of the chosen independent variables on attitude toward sex education in public schools. Results indicate that characteristics associated with traditionalism/ conservatism versus nontraditionalism/liberalism are the strongest predictors of attitudes toward sex education.


Blair, Robert


Sociology and Anthropology

Publication Date


Degree Granted

Bachelor of Arts

Document Type

Senior Independent Study Thesis

Available for download on Thursday, January 01, 2150

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© Copyright 1994 Jamice L. Huston