The relationships of school-based sexuality education, sexual knowledge and sexual behaviors: a study of 18,000 Chinese college students

Case Studies & Research
p. 1-9
Periodical title
Reproductive Health 14, 103 (2017)

With the aims to better understand the knowledge level of sexual and reproductive health (SRH) among Chinese youth and how this is associated with their sexual behaviors and reproductive health outcomes, this study conducted a series of quantitative analyses using the data from an Internet-based survey that investigated SRH among Chinese college students. We looked specifically into the associations of school-based sexuality education, knowledge on SRH with sexual behavior and reproductive health outcomes among college students. A total number of 17,966 undergraduates aged between 18 ~ 25, from over 130 Chinese colleges were included in the analyses. Results showed that only a half of the respondents reported having received school-based sexuality education, and they scored significantly higher in the SRH knowledge quiz. A higher SRH score was found to associate with better sexual behaviors and reproductive health outcomes. Students with higher level of knowledge on SRH were less likely to report negative reproductive health outcomes such as unintended pregnancy or abortion (in both males and females), and were more likely to use contraceptive methods in the last or the most sexual intercourses (only in males). Such findings support the need for a better implementation of school-based sexuality education in China, and for policy makers to employ a gender-sensitive approach, especially in empowering the girls, when designing education programs.

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