Public opinion studies

A survey conducted in Britain, Canada and the United States by Angus Reid Public Opinion in November 2011 asked adult respondents to look back to the time when they were teenagers, and describe how useful several sources were in enabling them to learn more about sex. By far, the largest proportion of respondents in the three countries (74% in Canada, 67% in Britain and 63% in the United States) said that conversations with friends were “very useful” or “moderately useful.” The next reputable source was the media (television, books, movies, magazines), mentioned by three-in-five Britons (65%) and Canadians (62%) and more than half of Americans (54%) as useful.

There are some striking differences on two other sources. While half of Canadians (54%) and Americans (52%) found their sex education courses at school to be useful, only 43 per cent of Britons share the same view. And while more than half of Americans (57%) say conversations with family were useful, only 49 per cent of Canadians and 35 per cent of Britons had the same experience.

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