Social Change and Premarital Sexual Behavior and Attitudes

Jessica Heckert, Pennsylvania State University
Rukmalie Jayakody, Pennsylvania State University

We use recently available, nationally representative data from the Survey and Assessment of Vietnam’s Youth (SAVY) to examine the prevalence of premarital sexual activity, attitudes regarding the acceptability of premarital sex, and accuracy of reproductive health knowledge among adolescents and young adults aged 14 to 25. We examine differences by geographic location and demographic characteristics. We also speculate on the potential implications of the mass media on the attitudes and behavior of adolescents and young adults. Findings suggest that premarital sex among adolescents and young adults is still comparatively low and attitudes are relatively conservative. Higher rates of premarital sex and less conservative attitudes are found among urban residents and males. Furthermore, ethnic minority populations demonstrate less accurate reproductive health information and reported fewer sources of information than the majority Kinh group. We discuss these findings in relation to media access.

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Presented in Poster Session 4