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Treatment and prevention for college student intimate partner violence: a needs assessment

1 January 2016


Intimate partner violence (IPV) is a global and widespread public health concern, and a serious problem among the college student population. There are various developmental and social risk factors associated with the college student population and environment that significantly increases the probability for IPV to occur, as well as numerous negative health and performance consequences as a result. Despite this evidence, there are still significant barriers to treating and preventing IPV on college campuses, and little is being done to address them. In an effort to advance the limited evaluative research available, investigators performed a needs assessment for a small liberal arts university in the Pacific Northwest lacking data on campus climate with respect to prevalence and perception of IPV. Utilizing measures including the Conflict Tactics Scale-2 (CTS2) and Banyard’s Readiness-to-Change scale, investigators evaluated prevalence and student awareness of IPV, as well as readiness to change, barriers to seeking help, and availability of targeted resources in a sample of undergraduate students at this university (n = 36). Within this sample, students frequently reported experiencing IPV, and demonstrated a general lack of awareness as to whether they experienced or perpetrated violence within their relationships. It was also apparent that students were unaware of available resources, somewhat hesitant to utilize what resources they knew of, and unmotivated to make changes in addressing IPV on campus. Recommendations and suggestions for future research were made based on these results to enhance treatment and prevention efforts on this campus.


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