Author(s)

Lauren Lucente

Date Approved

9-10-2012

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

M.A. Applied Psychology and Professional Mental Health Counseling

Department

Psychology

College

College of Science & Mathematics

First Advisor

Angelone, DJ

Subject(s)

Violence against women;Self-esteem

Disciplines

Psychiatric and Mental Health

Abstract

Sexual assault victimization has been associated with poor risk recognition and low sexual self-esteem (Gidycz, McNamara, & Edwards, 2006; Schwartz & Shipiro, 1997). Evidence suggests that sexual self-esteem may precede risk recognition subsequently impacting victimization (Mayers, Heller, & Heller, 2003; Zeanah & Schwartz, 1996). The purpose of this study was to investigate the direct predictive impact of global and specific components of sexual self-esteem on risk recognition. Participants engaged a laboratory analog to measure risk detection and completed a series of questionnaires to measure sexual self-esteem. Results indicated that global sexual self-esteem is not predictive of risk recognition. In regard to individual components, attractiveness was found to be uniquely predictive of risk recognition. Specifically, women who believed they were physically attractive had better risk detection than women who did not view themselves as attractive. These findings are discussed in relationship to expanding the literature on sexual self-esteem and risk recognition.

Share

COinS