A longitudinal perspective on dating violence among adolescent and college-age women

Am J Public Health. 2003 Jul;93(7):1104-9. doi: 10.2105/ajph.93.7.1104.


Objectives: We investigated physical assault in dating relationships and its co-occurrence with sexual assault from high school through college.

Methods: Two classes of university women (n = 1569) completed 5 surveys during their 4 years in college.

Results: Women who were physically assaulted as adolescents were at greater risk for revictimization during their freshman year (relative risk = 2.96); each subsequent year, women who have experienced violence remained at greater risk for revictimization than those who have not. Across all years, women who were physically assaulted in any year were significantly more likely to be sexually assaulted that same year. Adolescent victimization was a better predictor of college victimization than was childhood victimization.

Conclusions: There is a need for dating violence prevention/intervention programs in high school and college and for research on factors that reduce revictimization.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Battered Women / psychology*
  • Battered Women / statistics & numerical data
  • Child
  • Child Abuse / psychology
  • Courtship*
  • Crime Victims / psychology*
  • Crime Victims / statistics & numerical data
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Interpersonal Relations*
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Male
  • North Carolina / epidemiology
  • Rape / statistics & numerical data
  • Risk Factors
  • Schools
  • Universities
  • Violence / statistics & numerical data*