Document Type



Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



First Advisor's Name

Anahid Kulwicki

First Advisor's Committee Title

Co-Major Professor

Second Advisor's Name

Carol A. Patsdaughter

Second Advisor's Committee Title

Co-Major Professor

Third Advisor's Name

Frank Dillon

Fourth Advisor's Name

Sandra Gracia Jones

Fifth Advisor's Name

Lidia Kos


intimate partner violence, dating violence, university violence, perceptions of violence, perpetration, victimization, young adults, emerging adults

Date of Defense



Intimate partner violence (IPV) is recognized as a serious, growing problem on college campuses. IPV rates among college students exceed estimates reported for the general population. Few studies have examined the impact of IPV among the Hispanic college student (HCS) population or explored how HCSs perceive and experience IPV.

Focusing on young adults (ages 18 to 25 years), this mixed methods study was designed to explore the perceptions and experiences of IPV focusing on levels of victimization and perpetration in relation to gender role attitudes and beliefs, exposure to parental IPV, acculturation, and religiosity. A sample of 120 HCSs was recruited from two south Florida universities. A subsample of 20 participants was randomly selected to provide qualitative responses. All participants completed a series of questionnaires including a demographic survey, the FPB, CTS2-CA, SASH, ERS and CTS2. Bivariate correlational techniques and multiple regressions were used to analyze data.

Marked discrepancy between participants’ perceived experience of IPV (N = 120) and their CTS2 responses (n = 116, 96.7%). Only 5% of the participants saw themselves as victims or perpetrators of IPV, yet 66% were victims or 67% were perpetrators of verbal aggression; and 31% were victims or 32.5% were perpetrators of sexual coercion based on their CTS2 scores. Qualitative responses elicited from the subsample of 20 students provided some insight regarding this disparity.

There was rejection of traditional stratified gender roles. Few participants indicated that they were religious (20.8%, n = 25). Evidence for the theory of intergenerational transmission of violence was noted. Recall of parental IPV was a significant predictor of level of IPV victimization (β = 0.177, SE = 0.85, p = 0.041). Nursing and social service providers must be cognizant that contributing factors to either victimization and/or perpetration of IPV among college students must be addressed first (i.e., perceptions of IPV), both in acute (i.e., emergency department) and community (i.e., college and university) settings for optimum intervention outcome.





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