Her research has addressed female sexual pleasure and masturbation, vibrator use, couples communication, consensual nonmonogamy, diverse sexual behaviors, condom use, sexual satisfaction, sexually explicit media use, and the use of consumer sexual health and enhancement products (e.g., vibrators, condoms, lubricants, etc.).

For the past 20 years, Dr. Debby Herbenick's research has focused on understanding how people experience their bodies and sexual lives. Among her 160+ scientific publications, she has developed and validated measurement scales to assess genital self-image, the quality of sexual experiences, attitudes toward condoms, attitudes toward bisexual women and men, and has consulted on the development of a number of other measures.

Research Interests

  • Sexual behavior trends in the U.S.
  • Sexual pleasure
  • Rough sex behaviors
  • Women's sexual health
  • Population-representative sexual health
Physical Education, Public Health, Allied Health
PhD, Indiana University, Health Behavior, 2007
MPH, Indiana University, 2003
BA, University of Maryland, Psychology, 1998
sociology of sex and gender women's health reproduction racial justice