Catholic Culture Overview
Catholic Culture Overview
Catholic World News

Catholic college coeds found more promiscuous

March 01, 2010

Female students at American Catholic colleges are more sexually promiscuous than their counterparts at secular schools, according to a new study. Catholic-school coeds were more than four times as likely to have a casual sexual encounter as those at secular schools, researchers at Mississippi State University found. The survey authors found that while "moral communities" exercise some restraint on sexual activity, "our findings might instead suggest that not all religiously affiliated colleges and universities constitute ‘moral communities.’”

Commenting on the survey, Patrick Reilly of the Cardinal Newman Society noted that the results provide more evidence that many Catholic colleges and universities in the US have "experienced a dramatic decline in Catholicity while abandoning serious concern for the formation of students spiritually and socially outside the classroom."


For all current news, visit our News home page.

Further information:
Sound Off! supporters weigh in.

All comments are moderated. To lighten our editing burden, only current donors are allowed to Sound Off. If you are a current donor, log in to see the comment form; otherwise please support our work, and Sound Off!

  • Posted by: extremeCatholic - Mar. 01, 2010 11:21 PM ET USA

    This just might be the tipping point for male high school students to choose Catholic colleges.

  • Posted by: marttywinston6762 - Mar. 01, 2010 6:41 PM ET USA

    As to the cause (or causes) of the pattern, here's an alternative hypothesis from the author of the study: "Alcohol plays a key role in hooking up," Burdette said. "There's just not a lot of restrictions in the dorm" at Catholic institutions."

  • Posted by: - Mar. 01, 2010 5:20 PM ET USA

    I have to agree with Minesota, since most of the women I knew who graduated from 'Catholic' colleges about the time I graduated from a jesuit university are (rather stiffly) non-Catholic now. The problem will have to be solved in the Catholic home, though: the bishops speak basically to no one. Unfortunately, V-II just about pulled the rug out from under Catholic parents.

  • Posted by: - Mar. 01, 2010 4:39 PM ET USA

    I love that phrase "experienced a dramatic decline", as though the schools passively experienced a phenomenon that they had no active part in making. The truth is otherwise.

  • Posted by: Minnesota Mary - Mar. 01, 2010 4:16 PM ET USA

    Most of the girls that went to Catholic school with me in the 50's and 60's aren't even Catholic anymore. It all gets back to religious education received in Catholic Schools, Churches, and homes. If chastity isn't taught as a virtue, our young people won't be chaste. If nothing is a mortal sin, then everyone goes to heaven. Apparently the Catholic Bishops don't seem to be too concerned about this or they'd make the necessary changes in catechesis.