Psychology ETDs

Publication Date

Summer 7-15-2018


This study evaluated the effects of sexual victimization history, alcohol use, psychopathology, and sexual attitudes on the effectiveness of women’s response performance in hypothetical social situations depicting risk for sexual victimization. Two hundred and fifty undergraduate women first listened to audiotaped descriptions of the hypothetical social situations. They then were given a response to each situation deemed in prior work by experts in the sexual victimization field to be effective at reducing victimization risk and asked to provide each response verbally while they were being videotaped. Participants then completed measures assessing prior victimization history, alcohol use, psychopathology, and sexual attitudes. Experts in the sexual violence research area then rated participants’ responses with respect to how effective each response was in decreasing their risk for having an unwanted sexual experience, defined as an experience in which a woman may be verbally or physically coerced into having a sexual contact of any kind with a man. Structural equation modeling analyses revealed that none of the measures were significantly associated with women’s response performance. Implications for sexual assault prevention programs are discussed.

Degree Name


Level of Degree


Department Name


First Committee Member (Chair)

Elizabeth Yeater

Second Committee Member

Jane Ellen Smith

Third Committee Member

Katie Witkiewitz


Sexual Victimization, Response Performance, Sexual Attitudes, Alcohol, Psychopathology

Document Type


Included in

Psychology Commons