Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Sociology & Anthropology

First Advisor

Dr. Sarah Jane Brubaker


The United States has the highest teen pregnancy and adolescent STD rates of any industrialized nation. Numerous factors are involved in adolescent sexual decision-making and the social-ecological framework suggests that there are multiple levels of influence on adolescent development, including familial. Utilizing survey data from the Virginia Abstinence Education Initiative (VAEI), this project specifically explores paternal influences on adolescent sexual behavior and beliefs by examining paternal residence in the home, perceived paternal figure sexual beliefs, and father-child relationship factors. Results indicate that paternal figures influence their daughters' and sons' sexual behaviors as well as beliefs. Differences in paternal figure influence across gender were found as well. Those endeavoring to develop more effective teen pregnancy prevention and abstinence education programs may consider the involvement of paternal figures in future efforts.


© The Author

Is Part Of

VCU University Archives

Is Part Of

VCU Theses and Dissertations

Date of Submission

June 2008