Adams-Curtis, L. E. and G. B. Forbes (2004). "College women's experiences of sexual coercion: a review of cultural, perpetrator, victim, and situational variables." Trauma Violence Abuse 5(2): 91-122.
The literature on college women's experiences with sexual coercion is reviewed, with an emphasis on work published since 1990. Sexual coercion is defined as any situation in which one person uses verbal or physical means (including the administration of drugs or alcohol, with or without the other person's consent) to obtain sexual activity against consent. We argue that coercive sexual behavior among college students can best be understood within the context of other sexual behaviors and values on college campuses. Significant definitional and methodological problems are identified and discussed. Important victim, perpetrator, and situational variables are identified and discussed. These include attitudes toward women, beliefs about sexual behavior (including rape-supporting beliefs and values), communication problems, coercion-supporting peer groups (including fraternities and athletics), concepts of masculinity and femininity, sexual promiscuity, and alcohol.
Boutwell, Brian B., Barnes, J. C. and Beaver, Kevin M. (2013) “Life-Course Persistent Offenders and the Propensity to Commit Sexual Assault”, Sex Abuse. 2013 Feb;25(1):69-8
Moffitt’s (1993) developmental theory has garnered an extensive amount of attention from scholars across a range of disciplines, and the results generated from this body of literature have been consistently supportive. Specifically, the segment of the population predicted by Moffitt to be chronically aggressive—called life-course persistent offenders—has been found to account for a disproportionate number of serious crimes. What remains less certain, however, is whether this same group of offenders are also responsible for perpetrating acts of forced sex. The authors examined the tendency for life-course persisters to sexually assault using a nationally representative sample of individuals. Our findings suggest that life-course persisters are disproportionately more likely to be sexually coercive compared to other individuals.
Bouffard, J. A. and H. A. Miller (2014). "The Role of Sexual Arousal and Overperception of Sexual Intent Within the Decision to Engage in Sexual Coercion.", J Interpers Violence 2014 Jan 8;29(11):1967-1986
Sexual coercion is a significant problem on college campuses despite numerous attempts to better understand and prevent it. Some criminological research has examined the role of sexual arousal in decisions to use coercion and force, while psychologists have studied how overperception of sexual interest relates to coercive behaviors. The current study combines these two lines of research to examine whether sexual arousal increases the perception of sexual interest in a hypothetical coercion scenario. A sample of 387 college males were randomly placed into arousal and control conditions and asked to watch either erotic material or a lecture and complete questions regarding a common social dating scenario. Bivariate and multivariate results indicated significant relationships between sexual arousal and overperception of sexual intent with the decision to engage in sexually coercive behaviors, as well as a mediation effect. The implications for theory and sexual assault prevention are discussed.
Collings, S. J. (1994). "Sexual aggression: A discriminant analysis of predictors in a non-forensic sample." South African Journal of Psychology 24(1): 35-38.
The prevalence of sexual aggression (SA) was examined in a nonforensic sample of 346 male university students (aged 17-42 yrs). Ss completed 4 questionnaires about sexual violence and aggression against women. A history of sexually abusive behavior was reported by 25% of respondents, with 6% reporting an act of SA that met the legal definition of rape or attempted rape. However, it is likely that the true prevalence of SA is somewhat higher. None of the acts of sexual aggression had been reported to the police or to any social agency. Analysis showed a significant relationship between sexually abusive behavior and attitudes supportive of sexual dominance and aggression. Results show that rape-supportive beliefs and attitudes should be an important focus of primary prevention programs. (Afrikaans abstract)
Cook, S. L. (1995). "ACCEPTANCE AND EXPECTATION OF SEXUAL AGGRESSION IN COLLEGE-STUDENTS." Psychology of Women Quarterly 19(2): 181-194.
This study examines college students' acceptance and expectations of sexual aggression in common dating situations. Five hundred and forty-six college students completed a measure of rape acceptance beliefs to explore the ''campus climate'' regarding sexual assault. Results suggest that consensus on definitions of unacceptable behavior in dating situations is emerging: young college men and women overwhelmingly rejected the use of violent and coercive behavior. A surprisingly high number, however, expected this type of behavior in a variety of situations, for example, on dates involving the use of drugs or alcohol. Women's expectations of sexual aggression generally surpassed men's. Yet, in several situations, participants, regardless of their gender, expected the use of verbal threats of harm in order to obtain intercourse. Students expected tile use of force to obtain sexual intercourse the least. Results are discussed in relation to the reporting behavior of sexual assault victims and the development of primary prevention techniques.
Crawford, E. (2008). "Predictors of male sexual coercion in the context of sexual refusal." Dissertation Abstracts International: Section B: The Sciences and Engineering 68(11-B): 7707.
This study investigated the predictors of postrefusal sexual persistence in hookup and dating situations. Using an anonymous web-based survey, over 550 male undergraduates described experiences in which they were refused sexual activity. Participants also completed measures pertaining to sexual history, narcissistic traits, reactance (defined as the experience of anger, frustration, and rejection), antisocial traits, hostility toward women, adversarial sexual beliefs, dominance, and problematic substance use. Narcissistic exhibitionism emerged as a predictor of reactance to sexual refusal by a hookup partner. Substance abuse predicted the use of verbally coercive tactics in hookup situations. In dating situations, narcissistic vanity, substance abuse, and fewer antisocial traits predicted reactance to sexual refusal. Verbally coercing one's dating partner was predicted by a dominant interpersonal style. The use of physical force to attempt to gain sexual activity when refused by a dating partner was predicted by narcissistic exhibitionism and adversarial sexual beliefs. Implications for college sexual assault prevention strategies are discussed.
Darnell, D. A. and S. L. Cook (2009). "Investigating the utility of the film War zone in the prevention of street harassment." Psychology of Women Quarterly 33(3): 266-274.
Street harassment, the act of sexual harassment by strangers in public, is a common experience shared by many women. This paper reports the first experimental evaluation of the impact of a popular documentary-style film, War Zone, on men's attitudes toward street harassment and empathy for women who experience it. The sample was an ethnically diverse group of undergraduate men attending an urban university (N = 98). Given the film's primary focus on women's perspectives and the relation of street harassment to rape, we predicted the film would decrease acceptance of street harassment and increase empathy toward women who experience street harassment. We did not find support for these main effects. Hostility toward women, however, was negatively related to cognitive empathy and feelings of distress following the film, and hostility toward women moderated the effect of film condition on distress. Peer acceptance predicted greater self-acceptance of street harassment. Implications for future street harassment research and prevention strategies are discussed.
DeGue, S. and D. DiLillo (2005). ""You would if you loved me": Toward an improved conceptual and etiological understanding of nonphysical male sexual coercion." Aggression and Violent Behavior 10(4): 513-532.
This paper reviews current research regarding the prevalence and possible etiological factors associated with male sexual coercion, defined here as a class of inappropriate male behaviors in which nonphysical tactics (e.g., verbal pressure, lying, deceit, and continual arguments) are utilized to obtain sexual contact with an unwilling adult female. This form of sexual misconduct is contrasted with sexual aggression (i.e., forcible rape), in which the threat or use of physical force is utilized to gain sexual contact. A conceptual framework for understanding and examining sexual coercion within the broader context of male sexual misconduct is offered. This model consists of two primary dimensions: (1) types of sexual contact and (2) tactics for obtaining sexual contact, which intersect to form quadrants representing distinct categories of sexual misconduct. The broader sexual misconduct literature is utilized to shed light on possible predictors and etiological factors associated specifically with sexual coercion. These factors fall into four categories: (1) attitudinal or belief systems, (2) behavioral tendencies, (3) personality characteristics, and (4) childhood abuse experiences. Literature in each of these areas is reviewed and discussed. Finally, methodological and conceptual considerations for sexual misconduct research are presented. (c) 2004 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
DeGue, S., DiLillo, D., and Scalora, M. (2010) “Are All Perpetrators Alike? Comparing Risk Factors for Sexual Coercion and Aggression”, Sex Abuse. 2010 Dec;22(4):402-26
The present study developed and contrasted predictive models of male nonphysical sexual coercion (e.g., verbal pressure or manipulation) and physical sexual aggression (e.g., incapacitation, physical force, or threats) using a sample of 369 incarcerated males to identify shared and unique risk factors for each form of sexual perpetration. Results revealed a set of shared risk characteristics that predisposed individuals to both sexual coercion and aggression (i.e., belief in rape myths, sexual promiscuity, aggressive tendencies, and empathic deficits). In addition, findings indicated that whether the offenders engaged in only sexual coercion or also used more violent sexually aggressive tactics depended on the presence of two sets of traits unique to these forms of perpetration. Specifically, sexual coercers tended to possess traits that facilitated the use of verbal tactics (i.e., ability to manipulate others and to imagine others’ emotional reactions). In contrast, sexual aggressors had characteristics that could increase their willingness to “cross the line” and resort to more violent means to obtain sex from an unwilling partner (i.e., hostility toward women, egocentricity, an impulsive disregard for sociolegal proscriptions, and childhood emotional abuse). A model of general sexual perpetration that directly contrasted sexually coercive and aggressive men was also developed, and hostility toward women was identified as the only predictor capable of predicting perpetrator group membership. Together, these findings suggest that although sexual coercers and aggressors share some underlying risk factors, the etiological patterns of these behaviors are distinct and necessitate individual attention by researchers and prevention programs.
Flores, S. A. (1999). "Attributional Biases in Sexually Coercive Males." Journal of Applied Social Psychology 29(11): 2425-2442.
A social cognitive framework was applied to sexually coercive behavior. Sixty-two male undergraduates completed a self-report measure of sexually coercive behavior, as well as several questionnaires assessing trait aggression, the encoding of sexual behaviors, attributions of hostile intent, and traditional attitudes toward women. Results demonstrate a relationship between the encoding of sexual behaviors and committing sexually coercive behaviors. A tendency to encode ambiguous dating behaviors as admissions of sexual intent related strongly to initiating sexually coercive behavior, while none of the variables examined were strongly related to persisting in sexually coercive behavior. Similar effects were found when controlling for all of the other variables. Implications for intervention designs are discussed.
Gerber, G. L. and L. Cherneski (2006). "Sexual Aggression Toward Women: Reducing the Prevalence." Ann N Y Acad Sci 1087: 35-46.
Date rape or acquaintance rape is far more common than rape by strangers and can lead to serious health and adjustment problems for girls and women. Research has found women and men to be similar in many of their views about sexual assault. However, studies on attribution of blame have highlighted differences in the ways in which men and women attribute blame in sexual assault. Men attribute less blame to perpetrators of sexual assault than do women, regardless of whether the perpetrator is female or male. This suggests that men identify with the power associated with the role of perpetrator. Ways of reducing the prevalence of men's sexual aggressiveness toward women are addressed.
Griffin, M. J. and J. P. Read (2012). "Prospective Effects of Method of Coercion in Sexual Victimization Across the First College Year." Journal of Interpersonal Violence 27(12): 2503-2524.
Women who enter college with a sexual victimization (SV) history may be at particular risk for deleterious outcomes including maladaptive alcohol involve post traumatic stress, and re-victimization. Further, pre-college SV may be an impediment for the achievement of academic mile and may negatively impact the transition into college. Recent work shows that the method of coercion used in SV may be an important predictor of post-victimization outcomes. As such, the identification of pathways between type of SV and outcomes can aid in early identification and intervention for those at highest risk. In a sample of newly-matriculated female college students, this study examined unique outcomes associated with two specific types of SV, (1) threats/use of physical force (Force SV) or (2) incapacitation (Incap SV). Participants completed assessments of SV, alcohol involvement, post traumatic stress, and academic outcomes at 6 time-points over their first year of college. Results showed differential outcomes based on pre-matriculation exposure to Force SV or Incap SV. Women with Incap SV were higher on problem drinking indices whereas women with Force SV were at greater risk for re-victimization and marginally more PTSD symptoms. Having a history of either type of SV predicted attrition, but there were no differences when comparing Force SV to Incap SV. Overall, results from this study support the utility of delineating SV experiences by method of coercion, and point to the potential of highlighting different outcomes in tailored intervention programs.
Hamburger, M. E. (1995). "Assessing the validity of a multidimensional model of sexual coercion in college men." Dissertation Abstracts International: Section B: The Sciences and Engineering 56(5-B): 2940.
Two of the most consistently cited frameworks used to explain why people engage in coercive sexual behaviors are the social control (Brownmiller, 1975) and the psychopathology perspectives (Rada, 1978; Groth & Birnbaum, 1979). While these perspectives were once thought to be mutually exclusive, recent research and theoretical conceptualizations indicate that an integration of multiple frameworks may best identify the factors associated with sexual coercion. Participants' responses to 28 self-report measures of hypothesized risk factors for sexual aggression were examined and a structural equation model depicting the interrelations among these constructs was tested. Results supported the contention that factors from both the social control and psychopathological perspectives are essential to interpret the motivation underlying individuals' use of sexually aggressive behaviors. According to the results of the current study, the two focal constructs associated with sexual aggression are traditional sex-role socialization and psychopathy (i.e., having an underlying psychopathic personality). Traditional sex-role socialization influenced the development of rape supportive beliefs, which in turn influenced individuals' rape proclivity as well as their use of sexual aggression. Having an underlying psychopathic personality, on the other hand, influenced individuals' alcohol consumption and coercive sexual fantasies. Results further indicated that alcohol consumption influenced individuals' use of sexually aggressive behavior, while coercive sexual fantasies influenced their rape proclivity. These results underscore the importance of incorporating multiple dimensions when attempting to explain sexually aggressive behaviors. Implications of these results regarding future research, as well as treatment and prevention programs, are discussed.
Hernandez, G. S. and M. P. R. Mendoza (2009). "Recognition and use of sexual coercion tactics in men and women in the context of heterosexual relations a study of university students." Salud Mental 32(6): 487-494.
Violence is a problem gone through by people in one way or another because of the great amount of manifestations in which it is presented. Sexual violence constitutes one of those ways. At the present time, sexual violence is considered a high-priority problem of public health and of human rights; this type of violence is presented in a continuum that goes from groping to forced sexual relationships. Most of the people associate sexual violence with its extreme form which is rape, but, what does it happen with that type of violence where subtlety or persuasions are involved in order to obtain a sexual relationship? This kind of violence is denominated sexual coercion, and it is defined as the use of any type of physical or emotional pressure used by a person to impose on another one acts of sexual order in the context of a heterosexual encounter of mutual agreement to go out together, to get to know themselves, or to have a romantic or erotic relationship, or a more formal relationship such as the courtship. Sexual coercion is a phenomenon mainly studied in heterosexual and student populations and by means of the theory of sexual scripts is one of the forms adopted by it that have been theoretically tackled with. Sexual scripts are all those structural blocks of knowledge information processing where concepts, categories and relationships based on social experience are gathered and which indicate how heterosexual sexual relationships are to be. The vast majority of the studies on sexual coercion have provided enough evidence on the fact that men are the main perpetrators and women are mostly the injured victims. In developing countries, such as Mexico, several studies show that young men frequently feel with the right, precisely for the fact of being men, to have sexual relationships with young women. For this reason, it is understandable that young women's sexual activity is mostly stigmatized, what can contribute to the acceptance of sexual coercion within the intimate couple relationships as a more "mosculine" behavior and socially accepted. For this reason, although men con in some moment be sexually constrained and women con exert coercion, the meaning of the fact can be different and, besides, behaviors that ore carried out to obtain the wanted sexual behavior themselves also differ between men and women. Tactics constitutes a clear example on the difference between men and women in the act of coercion. Some international studies have identified, in general terms, two types of sexual coercion tactics indirect and the direct ones. The indirect tactics are strategies in which the person hides his/her sexual purpose. The direct tactics are strategies where the person openly uses physical or psychological force to compel the other one to get involved in certain sexual activity. In Mexico there are not studies about sexual coercion in non formal relationships of heterosexual couples Because of the above-mentioned, the present work objectives were to know the frequency and type of sexual coercion tactics in men and women university students. Methods and material Three hundred and twenty students were inter-viewed, 49.7% of them were man and 50.3% women, and the average individual age was of 21 years The sample was a non random one and the study was of exploratory type. A questionnaire ad hoc of open questions was elaborated, which made inquiries on the tactics used by men and women to press people of another sex to have a sexual relationship. Personal experiences of sexual coercion were also investigated. The application of the instrument was carried out in a group way and its length was around 45 minutes Open questions were analyzed through the search of thematic units and categories The contents analysis was used and later transformed into cases count in order to make the corresponding statistical analysis. Results About the experience of sexual coercion, 33.4% of the total sample mentioned that he/she had been victim of sexual coercion. Women (56.1%) reported being mainly victims of sexual coercion contrary to the men (43.9%), when carrying out an X(2) statistics there were not significant differences, in statistical terms, between men and women Nine point four percent of the total sample mentioned that he/she had exerted sexual coercion toward his/her couple Man (83.3%) reported to have mainly exerted sexual coercion toward their couple contrary to women (16.7%). When carrying out an X(2) statistics a significant difference, in statistical terms, between men and women was found [X(2)=16.21, (gl=320/1) p= 000]. Regarding the frequency of the different tactics used by men, men and women reported that the indirect tactics ore the most used by man to press women to have sexual relationships. Among the indirect tactics there were found the blackmail, the "test of love" the verbal dececis, etc. On the other hand, the direct tactics such as threats of physical violence, use of physical violence, insistent potting, etc., were less used by men. Regarding sexual coercion tactics used by woman, men and women who participated In the sample, mentioned that direct tactics are more used by women to press a man to have Sexual relationships. Within this kind of tactics there we-e found sexual advances using the body, use of physical violence, use of verbal Violence, etc. With respect to the indirect tactics, there we,a verbal deceits, blackmail, psychological threats, among others. Discussion This research is barely an exploratory study, non representative, but we consider that it makes a contribution of descriptive type. to the understanding of sexual coercion in heterosexual relationships when considering both men as women. As it is observed in the results about the experience of sexual coercion, in general lot Ins, such as it is shown in other studies, women were the main victims of sexual coercion, although some men reported being victims, there were no significant difference Besides, as in other studies, men were those who mostly reported to exert sexual coercion contrary to women, being differences significant in statistical terms. Regarding the tactics used by men in order to coerce their couple, men and women who participated in the sample recognized the indirect tactics as the most used ones, which is in agreement with the outcomes found In other studies What makes these results interesting is the fact that women recognize in a more open and significant way, that the way a man exerts coercion to a woman is by means of an indirect tactics These results are much related with the sexual scripts where the mail has to gain a sexual access to the woman. With regard to sexual coercion tactics used by women, the direct ones are outstanding, that is to any, those in which women openly uses the physical, psychological or economic force to press a iron to have sexual relationships. The studies about domestic violence state, on the whole, that violence is more exerted by men toward women than fine opposite case. Nevertheless, there are also studies about domestic violence which state that women are as aggressive os men These studies have been questioned and at the moment the debate persists about the findings, because although women use physical violence, It Is Important to wonder about the intensity of the blow or if the physical violence is rather a defensive answer. The results of this Study show the relevance of knowing more about this phenomenon, since many of the subjects in this study are not able to Identify any event of sexual coercion in their relationship, reason for which it will be necessary to search what is happening in Mexico on this matter and to even go into the topic of youth's relationships, in particular, the heterosexual ones and the scripts that regulate this relationship, in order to be able of creating better prevention programs guided to eliminate domestic violence to obtain a better mental, sexual and reproductive health.
Hines, D. and Straus M., (2007) “Binge Drinking and Violence Against Dating Partners: The Mediating Effect of Antisocial Traits and Behaviors in a Multinational Perspective”, Aggresive Behavior, Volume 33, pages 441–457 (2007)
Research has consistently shown a link between alcohol use and partner violence (PV). Little is known concerning the strength of this association across cultures and genders, and few have assessed possible mediators. This study assesses the link between binge drinking and PV among 7,921 college students in 38 sites around the world, and investigates the mediating role of antisocial traits and behaviors (ASTB). A significant association was found between binge drinking and PV, the strength of which differed by site but not by gender. ASTB fully mediated this association. The mean level of binge drinking at each site did not significantly influence the strength of the association between binge drinking and PV.
Jacques-Tiura, A. J. (2011). "Guy time: The effects of men's male friends on their heavy drinking, consensual sexual behaviors, and sexual assault perpetration." Dissertation Abstracts International: Section B: The Sciences and Engineering 71(11-B): 7143.
Risky, reckless, and potentially harmful behaviors reach their peak during the adolescent and emerging adulthood years. Past research demonstrates that a variety of social influences, including descriptive and injunctive norms, overt pressure, and modeling affect adolescents' and college students' heavy drinking, consensual sexual experiences, and sexual assaults. The construct of peer influence has been measured in many different ways, and little research has simultaneously considered peer influence on even two of the three outcomes in the current study. Further, much of the research with emerging adults is conducted with college students. To address these gaps in the literature, this study had two interrelated goals. First, to demonstrate how men's male friends influence their past-year frequency of heavy drinking, number of consensual sexual partners, and number of sexual assaults perpetrated. Second, to develop three new measures: Male Friends' Pressure to Drink Heavily, Have Numerous Sexual Partners, and Have Sex by Any Means; Comfort with Sexist and Nonsexist Statements; and a qualitative assessment of how men and their friends discuss women. Participants were 423 single, heterosexual men aged 18 to 35 from the Detroit metropolitan area who completed two audio-computer-assisted self-interviews, one year apart. The three new measures demonstrated excellent internal reliability coefficients, although the factor analyses did not fully support the hypothesized factor structure. Responses to the single item assessing how men and their friends talk about women were coded by three research assistants, who counted the number of objectifying and egalitarian phrases with a high level of interrater reliability. As hypothesized, male friends' pressures were significantly related to participants' past-year frequency of heavy drinking, number of consensual sexual partners, and number of sexual assaults perpetrated. There were also several interactions with individual difference measures, satisfaction with male friends, and age. Sexual assault perpetration was also associated with the types of discussions men had with their male friends about women and comfort in these situations. This study demonstrates that friends influence young men's drinking and sexual behaviors. Suggestions are made for involving peer groups in sexual assault prevention programs.
Lisak, D. and Ivan, C., (1995) “Deficits in Intimacy and Empathy in Sexually Aggressive Men”
Journal of Interpersonal Violence, Vol.10, No. 3, September 1995, 296-308
Lisak, D. and Miller, P. (2002). “Repeat Rape and Multiple Offending Among Undetected Rapists”
Violence and Victims, Vol. 17, No.1, 2002
Pooling data from four samples in which 1,882 men were assessed for acts of interpersonal violence, we report on 120 men whose self-reported acts met legal definitions of rape or attempted rape, but who were never prosecuted by criminal justice authorities. A majority of these undetected rapists were repeat rapists, and a majority also committed other acts of interpersonal violence. The repeat rapists averaged 5.8 rapes each. The 120 rapists were responsible for 1,225 separate acts of interpersonal violence, including rape, battery, and child physical and sexual abuse. These findings mirror those from studies of incarcerated sex offenders (Abel, Becker, Mittelman, Cunningham-Rathner, Rouleau, & Murphy, 1987; Weinrott and Saylor, 1991), indicating high rates of both repeat rape and multiple types of offending. Implications for the investigation and prosecution of this so called "hidden" rape are discussed.
Lisak, D., Hopper, J. and Song, P. (1996) "Factors in the Cycle of Violence: Gender Rigidity and Emotional Constriction”
Journal of Traumatic Stress, Vol 9, No. 4, 1996
A sample of 595 men were administered self-report assessments of childhood sexual and physical abuse, perpetration history, gender rigidity and emotional constriction. Including noncontact forms of sexual abuse, 11% of the men reported sexual abuse alone, 17% reported physical abuse alone, and 17% reported both sexual and physical abuse. Of the 257 men in the sample who reported some form of childhood abuse, 38% reported some form of perpetration themselves, either serial or physical; of the 126 perpetrators, 70% reported having been abused in childhood. Thus, most perpetrators were abused but most abused men did not perpetrate. Both sexual& and physically abused men who perpetrated manifested significant& more gender rigidity and emotional constriction than abused non-perpetrators. Men who reported abuse but not perpetration demonstrated significantly less gender rigidity, less homophobia and less emotional constriction than non-abused men.
Lisak, D. and Roth, S. (1988) "Motivational Factors in Non-incarcerated Sexually Aggressive Men”
Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 1988, Vol 55, no 5, 795-802
Research on convicted rapists has demonstrated the importance of several key motivational factors in male sexual aggression. In particular, anger at women and the need to dominate or control them have been repeatedly implicated. Although anger and power have been shown to be important in understanding college men who report sexually aggressive behavior, there is little research on what underlies these motives. This research combines questions assessing these underlying motivational factors, as well as questions dealing with underlying sexual motivation and disinhibition with a slightly modified version of the Sexual Experiences Survey Koss & Oros, 1982). In study 1, subjects were 184 male undergraduates. Factor analysis of the questions composing of four scales yielded four slightly modified scales. Scales measuring underlying anger, underlying power, and disinhibition significantly differentiated sexually aggressive from nonaggressive men but did not distinguish between men who were coercive, manipulative, or nonaggressive. In a replication on a smaller sample (n=70), underlying anger, underlying power, and disinhibition again differentiated sexually aggressive from nonaggressive men.
Lisak, D. and Roth, S. (1990) "Motives and Psychodynamics of Self-reported, Unincarcerated Rapists”
American Journal of Orthopsychiatry, 60(2), April 1990, 268-280
Fifteen men, classified by self-report as rapists and attempted rapists, but who had never been arrested or convicted, were compared to a matched control group on standardized instruments and content-coded interviews. Differences in hostility toward women, power motivations, and hyper masculinity were similar to findings from studies of convicted rapists. However, results suggest a greater role for the father in the etiology of rape-associated dynamics than has previously been reported.
Loh, C., et al. (2007). "Socialization and sexual aggression in college men: The role of observational influence in detecting risk cues." Psychology of Men & Masculinity 8(3): 129-144.
The present study examined the effects of observational influence on the recognition of sexual aggression in men using videotaped vignettes of coercive and noncoercive dating scenarios. Participants' self-identification with sexually aggressive behavior, ability to identify inappropriate dating behaviors, and ability to recognize nonconsent was assessed. The order in which video scenarios were presented was associated with differential recognition of risk cues. Further, compared with their nonaggressive peers, men with a history of sexual aggression saw their own behavior as more similar to the man in both videos, suggesting that men with a history of sexual aggression may be able to identify sexually aggressive behavior, but not label such actions as inappropriate, perhaps in accordance with perceived rape supportive norms. Implications for sexual assault prevention efforts among men are discussed.
Macy, R. J., et al. (2006). "Responding in Their Best Interests: Contextualizing Women's Coping With Acquaintance Sexual Aggression." Violence Against Women 12(5): 478-500.
Using an investigation of 202 college women who completed a survey about coping with sexual aggression from a known male assailant, the authors examined assailant behaviors, along with women's victimization history, alcohol use, positive relationship expectancies, and sexual assertiveness, to clarify how these factors shape women's responses to acquaintance sexual aggression. Multivariate regression analyses showed that these factors and assailant actions accounted uniquely and cumulatively for women's responding. Rape avoidance and resistance training programs can benefit by using a two-pronged approach: by targeting factors that impede and promote women's assertion and by helping women anticipate and respond to assailant actions.
Malamuth, N. M., et al. (1991). "Characteristics of aggressors against women: testing a model using a national sample of college students." J Consult Clin Psychol 59(5): 670-681.
Structural equation modeling was used to study the characteristics of college men (N = 2,652) who aggressed against women either sexually, nonsexually, or both. According to the model, hostile childhood experiences affect involvement in delinquency, leading to aggression through two paths: (a) hostile attitudes and personality, which result in coerciveness both in sexual and nonsexual interactions, and (b) sexual promiscuity, which, especially in interaction with hostility, produces sexual aggression. In addition, sexual and nonsexual coercion were hypothesized to share a common underlying factor. Although its development was guided by integrating previous theory and research, the initial model was refined in half of the sample and later replicated in the second half. Overall, it fitted the data very well in both halves and in a separate replication with a sample for whom data were available about sexual but not about nonsexual aggression.
Marmelstein Blackwell, L. (2002). "Sexual aggression among college men: A test of two empirical models." Dissertation Abstracts International: Section B: The Sciences and Engineering 63(4-B): 2064.
The problem of sexual assault on college campuses has reached vast proportions. In a national survey, one quarter of undergraduate men admitted to engaging in at least one sexual act against a woman's will since the age of 14 (Koss and Dinero, 1988). Extrapolation of these numbers implies that thousands of college men have engaged, or are engaging, in inappropriate and aggressive sexual behavior. The purpose of this dissertation study was to test a new model of sexual aggression among college men against an existing model. In the field of sexual assault research, two models have been empirically derived and tested: Malamuth and colleagues' confluence model (Malamuth, Linz, Heavey, Barnes, & Acker, 1995; Malamuth, Sockloskie, Koss, & Tanaka, 1991) focuses on developmental and socio-cultural variables, whereas Abbey and colleagues' model (Abbey, McAuslan, and Ross, 1998) has a stronger focus on situational and dynamic variables. The model proposed in the present study sought to combine elements of each of the extant models in an effort to more clearly explicate how sexually aggressive behavior is developed and expressed, as well as to inform sexual assault prevention efforts. Questionnaires were administered to 293 participants. Results indicate that the data fit the confluence model, but only a small portion of the variance was explained. Substantial modifications were required to the new model in order to obtain a good fit with the data. Once these changes were made, however, the new model accounted for twice the variance (25%) compared to the confluence model (13%). Reasons for the failure of several of the pathways in the new model to reach significance, rationale for the changes made to the models, implications for sexual assault prevention programs, and suggestions for future research are discussed.
Marsh, R., et al. (2013). "RESEARCH ON PERPETRATORS OF SEXUAL ASSAULT Estimating Age: College Males Versus Convicted Male Child Sex Offenders." Journal of Child Sexual Abuse 22(8): 968-986.
Two samples, male college students and convicted male child sex offenders, are compared on their abilities to accurately estimate the age group of a series of photographs of a sole female ranging in age from 11 to 29. Both samples tend to overestimate the age group of the subject photos, and no significant difference was found between college students and convicted child sex offenders in their ability to estimate the age of females. Both groups are compared demographically, and only limited differences were found. The implications are discussed in regard to theory and prevention of child sexual abuse.
Martin, A. F., et al. (2012). "Assessment of a Sexual Coercion Prevention Program for Adolescents." Spanish Journal of Psychology 15(2): 560-570.
This study's focus is to evaluate a sexual coercion prevention program in adolescents. Using a before-and-after design with both a treatment group (n = 93) and a control group (n = 76), an intervention of seven sessions was completed. Said sessions included such content as conceptualizing sexual freedom, sexual coercion and voluntary consent, analyzing different sexual coercion tactics and the contexts in which they occur, empathy toward the victim, and developing abilities to avoid risky situations. Other risk factors for coercive behavior and sexual victimization are explored as well, such as alcohol use, sexist attitudes and inadequate communication, among others. The intervention's results include a decrease in stereotypical beliefs about the opposite sex and increased empathy toward victims of sexual coercion. These changes were maintained with the passage of time. Also, in the treatment group, a more acute decline was observed in the proportion of young people engaging in sexually coercive behaviors. This article emphasizes the importance, necessity and efficacy of such interventions, and discusses and analyzes possible improvements to the program for its future implementation
McWhorter, S., Stander, V., Merrill, L., Thomsen, C. and Milner, J. (2009). “Reports of Rape Re-perpetration by Newly Enlisted Male Navy Personnel", Violence and Victims, Volume 24, Number 2, 2009
This study examined the frequency and characteristics of repeated attempted and completed rape (ACR) incidents reported by newly enlisted male navy personnel ( N = 1,146) who participated in a longitudinal study during the transition from civilian to military life. Overall, 13% ( n = 144) reported engaging in sexual behavior that approximates legal definitions of ACR since the age of 14. Among those men, most (71%) re-perpetrated ACR incidents ( M = 6.36, SD = 9.55). Demographic variables were unrelated to perpetration history. Regardless of time period, respondents reported perpetrating primarily completed rather than attempted rape, perpetrating multiple ACR incidents rather than a single incident, using substances to incapacitate victims more frequently than force, and knowing their victim rather than targeting a stranger in completed rape incidents.
O'Sullivan, L. F., et al. (1998). "A comparison of male and female college students' experiences of sexual coercion." Psychology of Women Quarterly 22(2): 177-195.
Research comparing men's and women's experiences of sexual coercion has typically assessed differences in prevalence rates and risk. We extended th is line of research by comparing the contexts of sexual coercion and reactions to sexually coercive experiences in an attempt to understand the meanings that men and women attribute to these events. Participants were 433 randomly selected college students who responded to an anonymous survey. In line with past research, more men than women reported being sexually coercive, and more women than men reported being sexually coerced in the preceding year. There was a great degree of correspondence between men's and women's reports of the contexts within which sexual coercion occurred. According to their reports, sexual coercion occurred primarily within the heterosexual dating context. Compared to men, however, women reported more negative reactions and stronger resistance to the use of sexual coercion. These findings emphasize how comparisons of prevalence rates alone may obscure important differences in the phenomenology of sexually coercive incidents for men and women. Findings are discussed in terms of implications for the development of education and prevention programs and the need to reevaluate current approaches to interpreting prevalence reports.
Porter, J. F. and J. W. Critelli (1994). "Self-talk and sexual arousal in sexual aggression." Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology 13(3): 223-239.
Examined the inhibitory-disinhibitory valence of self-talk during a simulated date rape. 92 university males were classified by self-reported history as high, low, or non-sexually aggressive (SA). They heard an audiotaped simulation of either consensual sex or date rape. Cues of forced sex activated inhibitory processes in non-SAs who, in this condition, showed low sexual arousal and a pattern of inhibitory self-talk, while high SAs showed high arousal and disinhibitory self-talk. Arousal was mediated by self-talk, but only in the consensual condition. These data suggest that self-talk may represent, at least in part, the elusive inhibitory mechanism distinguishing non-SAs from SAs. Additionally, they provide support for the cognitive mediation of sexual aggression and identify "on-line" self-talk as a specific target for clinical intervention.
Schewe, P. A., et al. (2009). "A Qualitative Analysis of the Temptation to Use Force in Sexual Relationships." Violence and Victims 24(2): 219-231.
College males completed a survey that asked open-ended questions concerning instances in which they might have been tempted to use force to obtain sexual contact with another person. Participants also completed Malamuth's (1989a, 1989b) Attraction to Sexual Aggression scale, Mosher and Sirkin's (1984) Hypermasculinity Inventory. and Burt's (1980) Rape Myth Acceptance and Adversarial Sexual Beliefs scales. Of the 83 participants, 22 (27%) reported that they had been tempted to use force. Participants that indicated they had been tempted to use force scored significantly higher on attraction to sexual aggression and hypermasculinity than those who were never tempted. Reasons for temptation, circumstances of the tempting situations, and possible ties to sexual coercion were explored.
Strang, E. and Z. D. Peterson (2013). "The relationships among perceived peer acceptance of sexual aggression, punishment certainty, and sexually aggressive behavior." J Interpers Violence 28(18): 3369-3385.
Researching the correlates of men's sexually aggressive behavior (i.e., verbal coercion and rape) is critical to both understanding and preventing sexual aggression. This study examined 120 men who completed an anonymous online questionnaire. The study aimed to determine the relative importance of two potential correlates of men's self-reported use of sexual aggression: (a) perceptions that male peers use and support sexual aggression and (b) perceptions of punishment likelihood associated with sexual aggression. Results revealed that perceptions of male friends' acceptance of sexual aggression were strongly associated with individual men's reports of using verbal coercion and rape. Perceptions of punishment likelihood were negatively correlated with verbal coercion but not with rape through intoxication and force. Implications for sexual aggression prevention are discussed.
Thomas, L. A. and B. B. Gorzalka (2013). "Effect of sexual coercion proclivity and cognitive priming on sexual aggression in the laboratory." Journal of Sex Research 50(2): 190-203.
This research follows from the "rape proclivity" literature to evaluate whether proclivity actually predicts sexual coercion. One hundred forty-two heterosexual males attending a Canadian university participated. Participants completed the sexual coercion proclivity questionnaire packet to determine high or low sexual coercion proclivity, and were randomly assigned to complete either an innocuous or a sexually aggressive cognitive priming task. Sexual coercion was operationalized by having men read increasingly graphic sexual material to an increasingly uncomfortable confederate. Regardless of condition, high sexual coercion proclivity males were more likely to engage in sexual coercion than low sexual coercion proclivity males. When the effects of discomfort were controlled, a significant interaction emerged between sexual coercion proclivity and the priming condition on sexual coercion. Although engaging in significantly less sexual coercion than the high sexual coercion proclivity males when assigned to the innocuous cognitive priming task, the low sexual coercion proclivity males assigned to the sexually aggressive cognitive priming task were indistinguishable from the high sexual coercion proclivity group. The nature of this relationship differed for Caucasian and Chinese men. These findings suggest that even those not previously inclined toward sexual coercion can do so under opportunistic circumstances, following an increase in discomfort associated with exposure to and involvement with sexually aggressive material. The prevention implications associated with this are discussed.
Thompson, M. P., et al. (2011). "A prospective mediational model of sexual aggression among college men." Journal of Interpersonal Violence 26(13): 2716-2734.
Guided by the Theory of Planned Behavior (TPB), the authors examined prospective associations of attitudes, norms, and control with sexual aggression (SA) perpetration 1 year later among male college students. Data were collected from 652 males via confidential, self-report surveys at the end of their 1st and 2nd years in college. Results indicated that attitudes conducive to SA and perceived norms supportive of SA were associated with a higher likelihood of engaging in SA 1 year later, and mediated the associations of some established risk factors for SA. The findings identify potentially changeable risk factors for perpetrating SA and can thus contribute to the foundation on which to build theoretical and empirically based prevention programs.
Thompson, M. P. and D. J. Morrison (2013). "Prospective Predictors of Technology-Based Sexual Coercion by College Males." Psychology of Violence 3(3): 233-246.
Objective: Technology-based coercive behavior (TBC) represents an emerging public health problem. This study contributes to the literature by identifying prospective individual-, social-, and community-level predictors of TBC. Method: Data were collected from 795 men who participated in a prospective study on attitudes and behaviors regarding relationships with women. Variables across multiple ecological layers were used to predict TBC. Results: Bivariate analyses indicated that most all of the assessed risk variables across all three ecological domains significantly predicted TBC. Multivariate regression analyses indicated five variables uniquely accounted for TBC behaviors, including rape supportive beliefs, peer approval of forced sex, number of sexual partners, exposure to pornography, and participation in student government. Conclusions: Our findings that TBC can be prospectively predicted by these risk factors suggest that computer-based technology interventions focusing on these factors through social network ads that promote reflection on healthy social and romantic relationship behaviors and attitudes could help prevent and reduce TBC.
Thompson, M. P., et al. (2013). "Trajectories and predictors of sexually aggressive behaviors during emerging adulthood." Psychology of Violence 3(3): 247-259.
Objective: To assess longitudinal trajectories of college males' sexually aggressive behaviors and determine time-varying individual- and peer-level risk factors that differentiate men who follow these different paths. Method: Our analytic sample consisted of 795 men who participated in a longitudinal study on high-risk behaviors among college students. The sample was surveyed at the end of each of their 4 years at university on a variety of measures, including sexual aggression (SA) and its hypothesized risk factors (hostile masculinity, number of sexual partners, alcohol misuse, and peer norms). Results: Using latent growth mixture modeling, we found four distinct SA trajectories: (a) consistently high, (b) decreasing, (c) increasing, and (d) consistently low. Multinomial logistic regression revealed that hostile masculinity and peer norms positively predicted trajectory membership at times when each trajectory reflected a high level of SA. Conclusions: Our study adds to the knowledge base by elucidating the different ways sexually aggressive behaviors change during emerging adulthood and how confluence-model-derived factors predict the different trajectories. The finding that changes over time in these risk factors correspond with SA perpetration risk informs prevention programming by illuminating the importance of continual focus on these risk factors throughout the college years, perhaps through annual self-assessments.
Wright, M. O., et al. (2010). "Predicting Verbal Coercion Following Sexual Refusal During a Hookup: Diverging Gender Patterns." Sex Roles 62(9-10): 647-660.
This online study explored gender differences in affective reactions to sexual refusal during hookups and whether state or trait measures were the best predictors of verbal coercion. The Midwestern U.S. undergraduate sample included 220 men and 50 women previously in situations where they wanted more sexual contact than their heterosexual partner desired. Women reported stronger negative responses on several affect variables, suggesting that such refusals might have resulted in significant expectancy violations. Men reported more experience in handling refusals, consistent with traditional sexual scripts. Logistic regression analyses revealed that dominant men were more likely to coerce when angry or confused, whereas hostile women were more likely to coerce when feeling rejected. The results have important implications for sexual coercion prevention efforts.
Amick, A. E. and K. S. Calhoun (1987). "Resistance to sexual aggression: personality, attitudinal, and situational factors." Arch Sex Behav 16(2): 153-163.
This study's purpose was to assess resistance to sexual aggression, from kissing/fondling to intercourse; to test the relative efficacy of three theoretical models (Victim Precipitation, Social Control, and Situational Blame) for predicting resistance to acquaintance rape. Seventy-five percent of the 206 university students reported vicitimization. Average time since victimization was 2.03 years. Sixty-eight percent of victims successfully resisted their most severe victimization attempt. Four situational factors predicted resistance: isolation of incident site, previous victim-offender relationship, previous victim-offender sexual intimacy, and clarity of victim nonconsent. Two personality variables, the California Personality Inventory scales of dominance and social presence, distinguished successful from unsuccessful resisters. Attitudinal measures were not statistically significant.
Banyard, V. L., et al. (2007). "Unwanted sexual contact on campus: A comparison of women's and men's experiences." Violence and Victims 22(1): 57-70.
While sexual victimization continues to be a problem on college campuses, recent attention has been drawn to understanding gender differences in victimization rates and consequences. To date, these studies remain relatively few in number. The current study surveyed 651 male and female undergraduate students about unwanted sexual experiences during 1 academic year. Comparison of men and women revealed expected differences in incidence rates, with women reporting higher rates of unwanted contact. Within the subsample of reported victims, however, there was gender similarity in terms of the context of unwanted sexual experiences. Analyses also revealed the negative consequences of these experiences for both men and women and low rates of disclosure regardless of gender. Across the full sample of students surveyed, there were interesting gender differences in knowledge of campus support services, with women more likely to have attended a prevention program and to have indicated greater knowledge of rape crisis services.
Combs-Lane, A. M. and D. W. Smith (2002). "Risk of sexual victimization in college women - The role of behavioral intentions and risk-taking behaviors." Journal of Interpersonal Violence 17(2): 165-183.
Recent investigations of risk factors for adult sexual assault have focused on a variety of behavioral and cognitive variables, including victim risk-taking behaviors. In this study, cognitive appraisals of risk activities, behavioral intentions to engage in risk-taking behaviors, and alcohol use were examined in relation to future involvement in risk-taking behaviors and the incidence of sexual assault in a sample of college women. At Time 1, 50(26%)participants reported a history of sexual victimization and at Time 2, 16(12.7%) reported new sexual victimizations. Discriminant function analysis indicated that alcohol use and expected involvement in risky activities at Time 1 were associated with new sexual victimizations at Time 2. Hierarchical regression analysis revealed that alcohol use and expected involvement in risky activities at Time 1 were predictive of frequency of involvement in risky sexual activities at Time 2. The implication of these findings for future research is discussed.
Cue, K. L., et al. (1996). "Women's appraisals of sexual-assault risk in dating situations." Psychology of Women Quarterly 20(4): 487-504.
Investigated how 165 female college students appraised their sexual-assault risk in a hypothetical dating situation. A 2 x 2 x 2 between-Ss experiment investigating the effects of male-dating-partner characteristics, story character beverage consumption, and perspective on women's risk appraisals was conducted. Multivariate analyses of variance (MANOVAs) were performed to test hypotheses regarding the feelings of the dating woman and the occurrence of sexual behaviors. Although the dating woman was rated as feeling more vulnerable on dates when alcohol was consumed, alcohol consumption did not influence ratings regarding the dating man committing nonconsensual sexual acts. Nonconsensual sexual behaviors were rated as more probable when the man had rape-congruent characteristics and when the Ss were judging another woman rather than themselves. These findings suggest that women are partially accurate in making sexual-assault risk appraisals and thus may benefit from rape prevention education that specifically targets their inaccuracies.
Daigle, L. E., et al. (2009). "The effectiveness of sexual victimization prevention among college students: A summary of "what works"." Victims & Offenders 4(4): 398-404.
During an academic year, between 3% and 10% of college women, nationally, experience rape; between 13% and 40% experience sexual victimization other than rape. A substantial proportion of these women are victimized repeatedly throughout their college years. Researchers and campus administrators know little about "what works" to reduce sexual victimization among college students. Evaluations suggest that most rape reduction programs improve students' knowledge and attitudes about rape but do not produce large, lasting reductions in sexual victimization. We review evaluations of college-based programs for preventing sexual victimization and highlight the most promising practices.
Greene, D. M. and R. L. Navarro (1998). "Situation-specific assertiveness in the epidemiology of sexual victimization among university women." Psychology of Women Quarterly 22(4): 589-604.
Protective and risk factors for sexual victimization were examined in a sample of undergraduate women. 274 Ss participated in the Time I assessment (protective and risk factors were assessed); 88 Ss participated in the Time II assessment (sexual victimization during the fall semester was assessed); 105 Ss participated in the Time III assessment (victimization during the spring semester was assessed). Assertiveness specific to situations with the opposite gender was protective at all 3 assessment times. Prior victimization, alcohol use, poor adjustment (as indicated by depression and anxiety), multiple sexual partners, and insecurity about relationships with the opposite gender were significant risk factors. Prevention efforts might be more effective if (1) behavioral practice of assertiveness was added to informational and attitudinal interventions; (2) assertiveness training focused specifically on relationships with the opposite gender; (3) medical and counseling services routinely assessed for prior victimization and other risk factors, and made appropriate referrals for women with victimization histories; and (4) alcohol education-programs were integrated with acquaintance-rape programs.
Greene, D. M. and R. L. Navarro (1998). "Situation-specific assertiveness in the epidemiology of sexual victimization among university women - A prospective path analysis." Psychology of Women Quarterly 22(4): 589-604.
Protective and risk factors for sexual victimization were examined in a sample of 274 undergraduate women. Assertiveness specific to situations with the opposite gender was protective at all three assessment times. Prior victimization, alcohol use, poor adjustment (as indicated by depression and anxiety), multiple sexual partners, and insecurity about relationships with the opposite gender were significant risk factors. Prevention efforts might be more effective if (a) behavioral practice of assertiveness was added to informational and attitudinal interventions; (b) assertiveness training focused specifically on relationships with the opposite gender; (c) medical and counseling services routinely assessed for prior victimization and other risk factors, and made appropriate referrals for women with victimization histories; and (d) alcohol education-programs were integrated with acquaintance-rape programs.
Humphrey, J. A. and J. W. White (2000). "Women's vulnerability to sexual assault from adolescence to young adulthood." J Adolesc Health 27(6): 419-424.
To study the vulnerability to sexual assault among undergraduate women. METHODS: The respondents were demographically representative of undergraduate women in state-supported universities in the United States. Participants (N = 1569) were surveyed using the Sexual Experiences Survey at the beginning and end of their 1st year and at the end of each of the next 3 years of their undergraduate career. Survival analysis was used to determine the risk of initial victimization during specific time intervals from the age of 14 years through the collegiate years as a function of prior victimization. Odds analyses were used to analyze the main and interactive effects of victimization at prior time periods on the probability of victimization at subsequent time periods. RESULTS: Victimization before the age of 14 years almost doubled the risk of later adolescent victimization (1.8). Furthermore, for those with and without childhood victimization, the risk of an initial sexual assault after the age of 14 years occurred most often in late adolescence, and declined each year thereafter (aged 18-22 years). Sexual victimization among university women was highest for those who had been first assaulted in early adolescence (4.6 times nonvictims). Detailed analyses revealed that the more severe the adolescent experience the greater the risk of collegiate revictimization. Adolescent victims of rape or attempted rape, in particular, were 4.4 times more likely to be as seriously assaulted during their 1st year of college. CONCLUSION: A linear path model is suggested. Childhood victimization increased the risk of adolescent victimization, which in turn significantly affected the likelihood of revictimization among college women.
Orchowski, L. M. and C. A. Gidycz (2012). "To whom do college women confide following sexual assault? A prospective study of predictors of sexual assault disclosure and social reactions." Violence Against Women 18(3): 264-288.
A prospective methodology was used to explore predictors of sexual assault disclosure among college women, identify who women tell about sexual victimization, and examine the responses of informal support providers (N = 374). Women most often confided in a female peer. Increased coping via seeking emotional support, strong attachments, and high tendency to disclose stressful information predicted adolescent sexual assault disclosure and disclosure over the 7-month interim. Less acquaintance with the perpetrator predicted disclosure over the follow-up, including experiences of revictimization. Victim and perpetrator alcohol use at the time of the assault also predicted disclosure over the follow-up. Implications are presented.
Orchowski, L. M., et al. (2013). "Social reactions to disclosure of sexual victimization and adjustment among survivors of sexual assault." J Interpers Violence 28(10): 2005-2023.
How a support provider responds to disclosure of sexual victimization has important implications for the process of recovery. The present study examines the associations between various positive and negative social reactions to sexual assault disclosure and psychological distress, coping behavior, social support, and self-esteem in a sample of college women (N = 374). Social reactions to assault disclosure that attempted to control the survivor's decisions were associated with increased symptoms of posttraumatic stress, depression, and anxiety and lower perceptions of reassurance of worth from others. Blaming social reactions were associated with less self-esteem and engagement in coping via problem solving. Social reactions that provided emotional support to the survivor were associated with increased coping by seeking emotional support. Contrary to expectations, social reactions that treated the survivor differently were associated with higher self-esteem. Implications are discussed.
Schry, A. R. and S. W. White (2013). "Sexual assertiveness mediates the effect of social interaction anxiety on sexual victimization risk among college women." Behavior Therapy 44(1): 125-136.
Sexual victimization is prevalent among college women and is associated with adverse psychological consequences. Social anxiety, particularly related to interpersonal interaction, may increase risk of sexual victimization among college women by decreasing sexual assertiveness and decreasing the likelihood of using assertive resistance techniques. This study examined social interaction anxiety as a risk factor for sexual victimization. College women (n = 672) completed online measures of social interaction anxiety, sexual assertiveness, and sexual victimization experiences. Social interaction anxiety was significantly positively related to likelihood of experiencing coerced sexual intercourse, and significant indirect effects, via decreased sexual refusal assertiveness, were found for both coerced sexual intercourse and rape. Social anxiety may be an important psychological barrier to assertive resistance during risky sexual situations, and developers of risk reduction programs for college women should consider including methods to help women overcome their social anxiety in order to successfully use assertive resistance techniques.
Swartout, K. M., et al. (2011). "A person-centered, longitudinal approach to sexual victimization." Psychology of Violence 1(1): 29-40.
Little research has drawn attention to distinct patterns of sexual victimization across time, although previous findings strongly indicate heterogeneity. Using longitudinal data, we tested a series of latent class growth models in an attempt to find meaningful patterns of sexual victimization frequency among female college students. Method: A sample of women (n = 1,580) answered questions at 5 time points concerning their childhood, adolescent, and collegiate sexual experiences. Latent class growth analysis was used with frequencies of sexual victimization at each of the 5 time points as indicators. Results: A 4-class model was selected on the basis of its fit to the data and its interpretability. The 4 classes are interpreted as low/none, moderate-increasing, decreasing, and high-increasing trajectories of sexual victimization. Negative childhood experiences-childhood sexual abuse, witnessing domestic violence, and parental physical punishment-partially explained latent trajectory membership. Conclusion: Possible implications of this research include the development of more specialized primary, secondary, and tertiary sexual assault prevention programs based on the victimization trajectories indicated by these analyses.
Turchik, J. A. (2012). "Sexual victimization among male college students: Assault severity, sexual functioning, and health risk behaviors." Psychology of Men & Masculinity 13(3): 243-255.
The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between college men's sexual victimization experiences, engagement in a number of health risk behaviors, and sexual functioning. The study also examined sexual victimization by assault severity categories and utilized a multiitem, behaviorally specific, gender-neutral measure. Three hundred and two male college students were recruited for the current study from a midsized Midwestern university. Of these men, 51.2% reported at least one sexual victimization experience since age 16. The multivariate analysis of variance (MANOVA) results suggested that male sexual victimization is related to increased weekly alcohol consumption, increased problematic drinking behaviors, increased tobacco use, increased sexual risk-taking behaviors, and increased number of reported sexual functioning difficulties. Each of these problematic behaviors was greater among those who reported rape compared to no victimization, and some differences were also found in relation to the sexual contact and sexual coercion groups. These findings have important implications in sexual assault prevention and risk-reduction programming.
Turchik, J. A. and C. M. Hassija (2014). "Female Sexual Victimization Among College Students: Assault Severity, Health Risk Behaviors, and Sexual Functioning." J Interpers Violence.
The purpose of the present study was to examine the relationship between college women's sexual victimization experiences, health risk behaviors, and sexual functioning. A sample of 309 college women at a mid-sized Midwestern university completed measures assessing sexual victimization, sexual risk taking, substance use behaviors, sexual desire, sexual functioning, prior sexual experiences, and social desirability. Severity of sexual victimization was measured using a multi-item, behaviorally specific, gender-neutral measure, which was divided into four categories based on severity (none, sexual contact, sexual coercion, rape). Within the sample, 72.8% (n = 225) of women reported at least one experience of sexual victimization since age 16. Results from MANCOVAs and a multinomial logistic regression, controlling for social desirability and prior sexual experience, revealed that sexual victimization among female students was related to increased drug use, problematic drinking behaviors, sexual risk taking, sexual dysfunction, and dyadic sexual desire. In addition, findings indicated that women exposed to more severe forms of sexual victimization (i.e., rape) were most likely to report these risk-taking behaviors and sexual functioning issues. Implications for sexual assault risk reduction programming and treatment are discussed.
Van Acker, C. A. (2005). "College women's cognitive, emotional, and behavioral responses to acquaintance sexual aggression." Dissertation Abstracts International: Section B: The Sciences and Engineering 65(10-B): 5426.
Self-efficacy, psychological barriers to resistance, and perceived behavioral responses to acquaintance sexual aggression were measured in 81 mostly Caucasian college women aged 18-28 years old who reported different levels of sexual victimization. Level of sexual victimization was measured by the Sexual Experiences Survey. Women who reported sexual assault had significantly lower levels of self-efficacy to prevent future male acquaintance sexual victimization than women who reported no sexual victimization. Other relationships between level of sexual victimization, psychological barriers to resistance and perceived behavioral responses to acquaintance sexual aggression were not supported. Hypotheses relating to self-efficacy to prevent future male acquaintance sexual victimization and attendance at sexual assault prevention programs, and self-blame were not supported as well. Seventy-two percent of women who reported experiences of sexual victimization indicated that they blame themselves fairly to very much. Clinical implications include the importance of clinicians creating treatment goals that target self-blame and working with their clients in attempting to alleviate feelings of blame. One limitation of this study is that women's hypothetical perceptions of how they believe they would feel and behave in a sexually aggression situation may not be strongly related to how they actually would behave. Suggestions for future research include grouping women who report past sexual victimization into more specific categories of sexual victimization in order to account for the many complexities of sexual victimization experiences and examining past psychological barriers and behaviors opposed to future ones.
Walsh, K., et al. (2012). "Lifetime sexual victimization and poor risk perception: Does emotion dysregulation account for the links?" Journal of Interpersonal Violence 27(15): 3054-3071.
The present study examined whether and which facets of emotion dysregulation serve an intervening role in the association between prior victimization and risk perception in an analogue sexual assault vignette. Participants were 714 university women who completed self-report measures of sexual victimization, emotion dysregulation, and a computer-administered written vignette of a college party scene that culminates in acquaintance rape. Approximately 42% of the sample reported lifetime sexual victimization during childhood, adolescence, or adulthood. Two individual aspects of emotion dysregulation, limited access to emotion regulation strategies and impulse control difficulties, mediated the association between lifetime victimization and leaving the scenario later. Findings suggest the importance of emotion dysregulation in predicting risk perception among victims and of improving victims' emotion regulation skills in revictimization risk reduction interventions.
White, A. L. (2002). "Understanding peer sexual harassment among older male adolescents." Dissertation Abstracts International Section A: Humanities and Social Sciences 62(8-A): 2685.
The problem of peer sexual harassment among students in schools and universities has increasingly become the focus of research efforts. Surveys indicate that large numbers of students experience peer harassment. A majority of students at the secondary level report both being sexually harassed by peers and sexually harassing peers. Most research has been directed at documenting the prevalence of the problem, and as yet, very little is known as to why students harass their peers. The present study used survey methods and a correlational research design to investigate peer sexual harassment perpetration among students in late adolescence. Participants were recruited from a medium-sized university to participate in a study on "harassment." The final sample consisted of 199 males ages 18 to 21. Peer sexual harassment perpetration was assessed with a self-report instrument developed for this study. This instrument samples broadly from all peer sexual harassment domains experienced by students, including gender harassment, a domain often overlooked or under-sampled in previous research. Results revealed that almost all participants reported committing sexual harassment against peers and receiving gender harassment from peers in the current school year. Results of a series of multiple regression analyses indicated that 48% of the variance in the sexual harassment of female peers could be accounted for by a set of variables suggested by previous sexual harassment and sexual assault research. The most important of these factors was self-reported sexual harassment victimization, which was operationalized as gender harassment received from other students. Being a target of gender harassment from peers was the most significant predictor across sexual harassment domains for harassment directed at both females and males. Other important predictors included adherence to beliefs about traditional masculinity, having peers with a hypersexual orientation, and tolerant attitudes toward sexual harassment. The results of the study were interpreted as supporting a feminist explanation of sexual harassment. Implications for harassment prevention and intervention programs were made that center around the intertwined roles that gender harassment and masculinity ideology play in the sexual harassment dynamic. Recommendations for research focus on the inclusion of gender harassment and other variables in future investigations of peer sexual harassment.
Yeater, E. A., et al. (2010). "Cognitive Processes Underlying Women's Risk Judgments: Associations With Sexual Victimization History and Rape Myth Acceptance." Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology 78(3): 375-386.
This study evaluated the effects of sexual victimization history, rape myth acceptance, implicit attention, and recent learning on the cognitive processes underlying undergraduate women's explicit risk judgments. Method: Participants were 194 undergraduate women between 18 and 24 years of age. The sample was ethnically diverse and composed primarily of freshman, heterosexual, and single women. Stimuli were written vignettes describing social situations that varied on dimensions of sexual victimization risk and potential impact on women's popularity. Participants completed cognitive tasks assessing relative attention to victimization risk versus popularity impact, learning about either risk or popularity impact, and explicit classification of victimization risk. Participants then completed the Sexual Experiences Survey (SES) and the Rape Myth Acceptance Scale; SES responses were used to quantify the severity of victimization experiences. Results: More severe victimization history predicted use of higher thresholds for judging situations as risky, as well as lower sensitivity to risk and greater sensitivity to popularity impact when judging risk. Greater rape myth acceptance also predicted lower sensitivity to risk information. Higher relative attention to victimization risk predicted greater sensitivity to risk information when judging risk. Recent learning about either the risk or the popularity impact aspects of social situations modified sensitivity to risk versus popularity when making risk judgments. Conclusion: The study emphasizes the importance of distinguishing the threshold for judging situations as risky from sensitivity to risk-relevant information in understanding individual differences in women's risk judgments. Both processes may be important to consider when developing interventions to reduce women's risk for sexual victimization.