Porn, alcohol, peers linked to sexual assault by male college freshmen

Porn, alcohol, peers linked to sexual assault by male college freshmen
Credit: Georgia State University

Young men entering college may be more likely to perpetrate sexual violence if they are consumers of pornography, engage in heavy drinking, subscribe to exaggerated male stereotypes and have friends who encourage sexual violence, according to a study led by researchers from the School of Public Health at Georgia State University.

Nearly one in five male freshmen reported committing one or more acts of sexual violence prior to starting , according to the study. Students who had perpetrated sexual violence also reported greater use of sexually explicit media, episodes of binge drinking, hypermasculine views and peers who were supportive of sexual violence in high school.

Federal law passed in 2013 requires colleges and universities that accept federal student aid to provide campus-wide sexual violence prevention programs, the study noted.

"However, these policies do not take into consideration that many college freshmen already may have engaged in sexual violence before matriculation," the researchers said. "For these policies and programming to be effective, more tailored prevention efforts, which incorporate assessments of incoming freshmen's precollege sexual experiences along with associated risk and protective behaviors and attitudes, are needed."

The study results also showed that young men with more knowledge of what constitutes consent and stronger family ties were less likely to start college having a history of .

The study surveyed 1,133 male freshmen ages 18-24 from 30 four-year colleges and universities throughout Georgia. The surveys were conducted during the fall 2013, spring 2014 and fall 2014 semesters.

The results of the study are published in the Journal of Adolescent Health in the article titled "Precollege Sexual Violence Perpetration and Associated Risk and Protective Factors Among Male College Freshmen in Georgia."


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More information: Laura F. Salazar et al. Precollege Sexual Violence Perpetration and Associated Risk and Protective Factors Among Male College Freshmen in Georgia, Journal of Adolescent Health (2018). DOI: 10.1016/j.jadohealth.2017.09.028
Provided by Georgia State University
Citation: Porn, alcohol, peers linked to sexual assault by male college freshmen (2018, June 6) retrieved 20 February 2019 from https://medicalxpress.com/news/2018-06-porn-alcohol-peers-linked-sexual.html
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