Sex in Australia: A guide for readers

Authors


Australian Research Centre in Sex, Health and Society, La Trobe University, 215 Franklin Street, Melbourne, Victoria 3000. Fax: (03) 9285 5220; e-mail: anthony.smith@latrobe.edu.au

Abstract

The Australian Study of Health and Relationships (ASHR), a survey of 19,307 people aged 16–59 years which had a broad focus across many aspects of sexual and reproductive health. Our primary goal in presenting these data is to describe the overall prevalence of key outcomes and the ways in which they are patterned with respect to a range of sociodemographic factors. The socio-demographic factors used include age, gender, language spoken at home, highest level of education completed, region of residence, household income and occupational category. Where appropriate we also include stated sexual identity. Our choice of these factors reflects the fact that they are major elements in the structure of the Australian population and Australian society. For the purpose of reporting the initial results, we have grouped these outcomes into 18 papers. They are bracketed by an introductory methods paper which provides a detailed account of the design and execution of the study, and a concluding paper reflecting on the key themes emerging from the findings, the strengths and limitations of our approach and recommendations for future research.

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