Addressing Male-Targeted University Sexual Aggression: An Experimental Evaluation of a Social Norms Approach


    loading  Checking for direct PDF access through Ovid

Abstract

We experimentally examined the impact of male undergraduates’ exposure to real antisexual assault injunctive social norms on their attitudes and intentions related to perceived appropriateness of alcohol-facilitated sexual assault, rape myth acceptance, self-perceived likelihood of committing sexual assault, and future intentions to commit sexual coercion. A total of 353 male participants were randomly assigned to three conditions—local injunctive norms (antisexual assault norms based on male undergraduates at their university), general injunctive norms (antisexual assault norms based on men in general), and control. Planned contrast analyses of variance demonstrated that those in the local injunctive norms condition had lower levels of perceived appropriateness of alcohol-facilitated sexual assault, rape myth acceptance, self-perceived likelihood of committing sexual assault, and future intentions to commit sexual coercion. Additionally, past history of sexual aggression perpetration moderated the experiment effects. Specifically, the injunctive local norms and general norms conditions had a greater impact on reduced self-perceived likelihood of committing sexual assault for those higher in past sexual aggression perpetration. These findings have important implications for college-based male-targeted sexual assault prevention, particularly in high-risk sexual assault perpetrators.

    loading  Loading Related Articles