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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Reducing sexual aggression with a story: Narrating the self

  • Author(s): Scroggins, William Anthony
  • Advisor(s): Mackie, Diane
  • et al.

In four studies I developed a novel measure of sexual aggression which operationalizes sexual aggression by the number and content of photos that males “select” for female participants to view, validated the new measure of sexual aggression, identified ingroup norms highly associated with sexual aggression within the UCSB and Mechanical Turk male college students populations, utilized the ingroup norms found to be associated with sexual aggression to develop a sexual aggression reduction intervention based on the psychological process of character identification, tested the effectiveness of the character identification intervention against the standard group identification intervention, and investigated the mechanisms by which character identification and group identification change behavior. Study 1 identified two norms closely associated with sexual aggression among male UCSB and Mechanical Turk college students. Pilot Study 1 demonstrated that the stimuli selection task developed for this dissertation is a valid measure of sexual aggression. Pilot Study 2 integrated the norms identified in Study 1 into a series of narratives and had male UCSB and Mechanical Turk students evaluate them to ensure that they were equivalent. Study 2 compared the effectiveness of a character identification based sexual aggression reduction intervention to a group norm based sexual aggression reduction intervention. The processes by which these interventions are theorized to work were also examined.

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