The effects of frame of reference on responses to questions about sexual assault victimization and perpetration

Antonia Abbey, Michele R. Parkhill, Mary P Koss

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

61 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Self-reports of sexual assault are affected by a variety of factors including the number of questions, question phrasing, and context. Participants (307 women, 166 men) were randomly assigned to one of two forms of a questionnaire. One form had the tactics used to obtain forced sex as the initial frame of reference, whereas the other form had the type of sex that was forced as the initial frame of reference. Seventy-five percent of the women who received the tactics-first version reported that they had at least one victimization experience since the age of 14, as compared to 62% of the women who received the type-of-sex-first version. Sixty-nine percent of the men who received the tactics-first version reported that they hud at least one perpetration experience since the age of 14, as compared to 36% of the men who received the type-of-sex-first version. These findings have implications for how questionnaires should be designed to maximize reporting of sexual assault incidents.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)364-373
Number of pages10
JournalPsychology of Women Quarterly
Volume29
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2005

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Crime Victims
assault
victimization
tactics
questionnaire
incident
experience
Self Report
Sexual Assault
Frame of Reference
Victimization
Tactics
Surveys and Questionnaires
Questionnaire

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology(all)
  • Gender Studies

Cite this

The effects of frame of reference on responses to questions about sexual assault victimization and perpetration. / Abbey, Antonia; Parkhill, Michele R.; Koss, Mary P.

In: Psychology of Women Quarterly, Vol. 29, No. 4, 12.2005, p. 364-373.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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