Background: Risky sexual behaviour remains a critical health concern among the general population of Ethiopia. The occurrence of risky sexual behaviours and associated factors for HIV infections is the core of sexuality matters in adolescents and youths. The aim of this study was to assess the risky sexual behaviour among students of Arsi University. Methods: A cross sectional institutional based study was done in Arsi University to assess the risky sexual behaviour among students of Arsi University. Six hundred twenty two randomly selected students were included in the study from three colleges of Arsi University. Structured self administered questionnaire was used to collect data. Data was entered to Epi-enfo version 7 and analyzed using SPSS version 21. Results: A total of 622 students were included in the study. The respondents’ mean age was 20.9(± 0.094, 95% CI) years. Two hundred sixty one (72.2%) students had sexual intercourse previously, and the mean age at first sexual intercourse was 18.6(±0.122, 95% CI). Among the sexually active students 175 (67%) used condom during sexual intercourse. Two hundred fifty three (40.7%) participants wore Fashion cloths. Students who wore fashion clothes were about three times more likely to use condom inconsistently than those who didn’t wear fashion cloths (AOR= 2.633; 95% C: (1.355, 5.116). One hundred sixty three (26.2%) participants were addicted to chewing chat, and students who were addicted to chewing chat were about two times more likely to use condom inconsistently than those who had no habit of chewing chat. (AOR= 2.195; 95% CI: 1.188, 4.057). Conclusion: Almost half of the study participants had been engaged in sexual intercourse and there was low level of persistent condom utilization. Higher inconsistence in condom utilization was reported from students who had the habit of chewing chat, wearing fashion clothes and preferred premarital sex. Therefore, there is a need to enhance the awareness of students about the effect of addiction and other potential factors on developing risky sexual behaviour.
Keywords: Risky sexual behaviour, sexual intercourse, HIV infections.