College students' attitudes toward elderly sexuality: A two factor solution

Jennifer L. Hillman, George Stricker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


The present study examined the ability of the Aging Sexuality Knowledge and Attitude Scale (ASKAS) to assess individuals' attitudes toward elderly sexuality. The instrument's primary assumption, that individuals' attitudes toward elderly sexuality are one dimensional, was challenged. Four hundred and fifty-eight college students, with a mean age of 27 (s.d. = 8.67), completed the attitude subscale of the ASKAS, responded to a series of elderly sexuality attitude items constructed by the authors, and provided self-report information regarding a number of demographic and personality variables. A factor analysis of all attitude items revealed a two factor solution in which items loading on the first factor appeared to represent more restrictive (i.e. less permissive) attitudes toward elderly sexuality, whereas items loading on the second factor appeared to represent more empathic attitudes. The validity of this bivariate attitude structure appears to be supported by the differentially predictive nature of a number of subject variables including religiosity, death anxiety, salience of elderly sexuality, and age. The discovery of this underlying, two factor attitude solution also is used to interpret previously discrepant findings regarding health care providers' attitudes toward elderly sexuality.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)543-558
Number of pages16
JournalCanadian Journal on Aging
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jan 1 1996

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Health(social science)
  • Gerontology
  • Community and Home Care
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology


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