EUGENE, Ore. -- The University of Oregon health center recently developed an app that is aimed at making sex education a little less awkward for college students.
The health center is trying to promote “shame-free sex education” through a phone app called Sexpositive, said health promotions marketing manager at UO Keith Vannorman.
"Roughly 75 percent of our students have reported that they have at least one sexual partner. We found that students ... they wanted to get the information, but they didn't want to ask that many questions,” said Vannorman.
Their solution? Developing an app to handle those tricky questions.
The app has links to information from different organizations, and features tools like a two-wheel dial that is labeled with parts of the body and/or devices.
"You get the inner wheel, which is my wheel,” explained Vannorman. “It fills out the sentence, and you get the (sexually transmitted infection) risks, safer sex practices, communication and advice … or the choice to spin the wheel again.”
Users can spin the wheel at random and can learn more about that behavior, STI risks, safer sex practice as well as basic advice.
Freshman Anthony Gutrick said Sexpositive could help students with questions that didn't get answered in high school sex-ed courses.
"They just say this is where a baby comes from. This is how it comes out," said Gutrick.
As for how well the app can deliver, Anthony remains skeptical.
“I don't know. I might not take it seriously, just because it's on an app. When you think of apps, you think of games and stuff like that," said Gutrick.
"I think having an app available for that could be really useful… it seems like something people would get really into," said Amanda Lyche, a junior at the university.
According to the University of Oregon, about 34 percent of students who pay the mandatory health fee, don't take advantage of the services offered on campus.
“We can have a kind of conversation starter that doesn't put the onerous on them," said Vannorman.
Sexpositive will be launched on Android or IOS on Tuesday, October 15.