Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Date of Award




Degree Level


LCSH subject

Intergenerational communication--Religious aspects.




1 online resource

Proquest Document ID





St. Mary's University (San Antonio, Texas). Department of Counseling.

Size or duration

1 online resource (ix, 113 pages)

Document Type


First Advisor

Ratliff, Dan

Second Advisor

Northrup, Jason

Third Advisor

Richardson, Belinda


Most studies on parental religiosity have focused on specific adolescent sexual behaviors (i.e. sexual initiation), family cohesion, greater supervision, and higher moral expectation while parent-adolescent communication about sexual matters remains understudied. The purpose of this study was to examine the relative influence of parent variables such as relation, education level, communication style (degree of openness, extent of problems), and religiosity (public, private) on sex communication and the age at which parents began conversations about sexual matters. A sample of 170 parents and caregivers from the Continental United States who had at least one adolescent 13-18 years old completed questions on demographics, religiosity, Parent-Adolescent Communication Scale (PACS), age of initial conversation about sexual matters, and The Sexual Communication Scale (SCS). Results indicated most parents initiated conversations about sexual matters by age 12. A multiple regression was used to investigate the influence of the parental variables on sex communication and the age at which parents began conversations about sexual matters. The results of the multiple regression analysis on the influence of the predictor variables on age of the initial conversation about sexual matters indicated that parental education level and degree of openness were negatively related to the age of initial parental conversation about sexual matters. A second multiple regression was conducted with the same predictor variables to determine if they had an influence on communication about sexual matters. These variables had no significant influence on conversations about sexual matters. In both multiple regression analyses, religiosity was not significantly associated with the age at which parents began conversations about sexual matters and sex communication in general. Discussion focused on implications for parents, educators, therapists, and future research.


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