Victims of Sexual Assault on College Campuses Are at High Risk for Future Assaults

A new study by the Research Institute on Addictions at the University at Buffalo of the State University of New York System finds that college women who have been victims of sexual assault are three times as likely as women on college campuses generally to be victims of sexual assault again.

The study followed 1,000 college women over a five-year period. The data showed that women who had been assaulted showed an increased level of alcohol consumption over the next year, perhaps as a coping mechanism.

Kathleparksen A. Parks, a senior research scientist at the university and the principal investigator on the project, explains that “initially, we were attempting to see if victimization increased drinking, and if drinking then increased future risk. Instead we found that biggest predictor of future victimization is not drinking but past victimization.”

Dr. Parks is a magna cum laude graduate of the Southampton, New York, campus of Long Island University, where she majored in marine biology. She earned a Ph.D. in neuroscience at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.

The study, “A Longitudinal Analysis of Drinking and Victimization in College Women: Is There a Reciprocal Relationship?” was published on the website of the journal Psychology of Addictive Behaviors. It may be accessed here.

Filed Under: Research/Study


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