Secondary School Student Attitudes toward Sexual Violence: Identifying Clusters and Their Implications for Prevention Programs

Victoria L. Dickman-Burnett, Bonnie S. Fisher, Jacinda K. Dariotis, Maribeth Geaman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

With sexual violence prevention programs gaining traction in secondary schools, students’ attitudes toward sexual violence have begun to be measured more frequently. While these attitudes are measured as outcomes of prevention programs, students’ preexisting attitudes toward sexual violence shape how prevention programs are received by the students who participate in such programs. This quantitative study examines clusters of student attitudes within a single high school. Students in grades nine through 12 (N = 626) completed a survey measuring rape myth acceptance, hostile sexism and traditionalism, and empathy for survivors. Using K-Means cluster analysis, the authors identified five clusters of students by attitudes toward sexual violence: Progressive/Feminist, Rape Justifying Attitudes, Victim-Blaming Moderate, Perpetrator-Excusing Moderate, and Traditionalist. Implications of these findings for prevention programming are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalJournal of School Violence
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2021

Keywords

  • Attitudes toward sexual violence
  • cluster analysis
  • prevention programming
  • secondary school

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Safety, Risk, Reliability and Quality

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