Changes in Sexual Values and Their Sources Over the 1st Year of College

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The present study identified emerging adults’ self-generated sexual values and sources of sexual values upon entering college and a year later to assess how these values and sources may have changed. Participants included 148 college students (86 women and 62 men) who were 17 to 19 years old at Time 1 (M = 18.1). Generative coding revealed seven thematic sexual values: casual versus relational criteria for sexual intercourse, respect, giving or obtaining consent, pleasure for self and partner, intimacy, trust, and physical safety. Regarding sources of values, participants reported interpersonal, intrapersonal, and societal sources. Analyses revealed few gender differences in sexual values. Valuing casual criteria for sexual intercourse increased in frequency from Time 1 to Time 2 and valuing relational criteria decreased. Peers and dating partners increased in frequency and parents decreased in frequency as sources of sexual values.