Date of Award

January 2016

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



First Advisor

Daphne Pedersen


This thesis examines educational and familial influences on contraceptive self-efficacy among young adults. Self-efficacy theory states that beliefs about personal efficacy constitute the key factor behind human agency. Contraceptive self-efficacy refers to the belief in one’s ability to utilize contraceptives in a sexual situation. Based on previous literature it is expected that young adults who have had comprehensive reproductive health education, report higher levels of individual educational attainment, and report higher levels of mothers’ and fathers’ educational attainment will report higher levels of contraceptive self-efficacy. To test these associations, data from a stratified random sample of undergraduate students enrolled at the University of North Dakota in the Spring of 2015 was used (N = 575). Findings support a link between reproductive health education and contraceptive self-efficacy, highlighting the importance of targeted information for students.