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Effects of Abstinence‐Only Education on Adolescent Attitudes and Values Concerning Premarital Sexual Intercourse

Sather, Linda EdD, MSN, RN1; Zinn, Kelly MSN, RN2


This article compares the values and attitudes of two groups of 7th and 8th grade adolescents toward premarital sexual activity. One group received state‐funded, abstinence‐only education; the other group did not receive that education. Abstinence‐only education did not significantly change adolescents' values and attitudes about premarital sexual activity, nor their intentions to engage in premarital sexual activity. The majority of both the treatment and control group subjects expressed disagreement with the statement: “It is okay for people my age to have sexual intercourse,” and they did not intend to have sexual intercourse while an unmarried teenager.

1Assistant Professor College of Nursing University of Nebraska Medical Center

2Pediatric Clinical Instructor Children's Hospital Omaha, Nebraska

Funding for this research was provided by the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services, Nebraska Abstinence Education Grant.

© 2002 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.