Correlates of Support Utilization After Experiencing a Sexual Assault Among College Women and Men

Lora K. McGraw, Kimberly A. Tyler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Though previous research has examined survivors’ use of formal and informal services, less research has looked at whether sexual orientation, race, and different sexual assault types (e.g., coercive) are associated with seeking support services. The purpose of this study is to examine factors associated with utilizing services or support from informal sources (e.g., telling a friend) and formal sources (e.g., psychological counseling) following a sexual assault. Data were gathered in Fall and Spring of 2019–2020 from undergraduate students at a Midwestern university. Logistic regression results showed that heterosexual students had 56% lower odds of using informal supports, while females were 2.05 times more likely to have used informal supports compared to their counterparts. Students who reported more heavy drinking had 37% lower odds of using informal supports compared to their counterparts. Those who experienced physical and incapacitated sexual assault were 2.09 times and 3.60 times more likely to have used informal supports, respectively. Additionally, older students were 1.35 times more likely to have used formal supports compared to younger students, whereas heterosexual students had 67% lower odds of using formal supports compared to sexual minority students. Those with greater PTSD symptoms were 1.07 times more likely to access formal services. Finally, students with greater depressive symptoms had 8% lower odds of using formal supports. Identifying college students who are less likely to access support services following a sexual assault has important implications for targeted prevention and intervention.

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

Keywords

  • college students
  • formal supports
  • informal supports
  • service use
  • sexual assault

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Applied Psychology

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Correlates of Support Utilization After Experiencing a Sexual Assault Among College Women and Men'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this