Parsons School of Design

BFA Communication Design

Thesis 2017–18

Gabriela Vieira
Know Sex

The average American teenager consumes seven hours of digital media everyday. During that time, 75% of the content is sexually explicit, but of that only 14% is medically accurate and communicates the risks and responsibilities of sex. This wouldn’t be an issue if teens were receiving that information elsewhere, such as their high school sex education classes. However, they aren’t.

American high schools teach government funded Abstinence Only Until Marriage (AOUM), also called Sexual Risk Avoidance (SRA). AOUM/SRA is a conservative, heteronormative, and oftentimes medically inaccurate curriculum that has had virtually no effect in reducing sexual risk behaviors or initiation amongst teens; the average teen first has sex at 17, and only 80% of them received sex education beforehand. Considering this, the current state of sex education in the United States is outdated, tone-deaf, and leaves teens ignorant and unprepared in matters surrounding sex and sexual health. A revision in how sex education is approached is needed; teens need Know Sex.

A contemporary sex education model designed for teenagers and the way they consume media online, Know Sex fosters an inclusive conversation surrounding sexual health, which has been miscommunicated or untouched upon in classrooms. Furthermore, it points them in an accurate, digital direction to where they can find more information in order to fill the gaps in their sexual comprehension. Access to information surrounding sexual health is necessary for the foundation of freedom and equality for all people. Teenagers have the right to access the information they need to make their own well-informed decisions, and Know Sex helps them do that.


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Human Canvas
Parsons School of Design
BFA Communication Design
Thesis 2017–18