Conceptualization of acquaintance rape and resistance strategies within a Constructivist Self Development Theory framework

Date of Completion

January 2000


Psychology, Clinical




Over three hundred college women completed questionnaires assessing their core beliefs about themselves and others (schemas), their sexual histories, and their perceptions of their sexual experiences. It was expected that: (a) in comparison to nonvictims, women who had been victims of acquaintance rape or attempted rape would exhibit greater schematic disruption and greater psychological barriers to effective resistance in the future; (b) women who had successfully resisted acquaintance rape would exhibit less schematic disruption than those who were unsuccessful resisters; and (c) physically assertive defensive strategies would be the most effective but least commonly used methods of resistance to acquaintance sexual assault among college women. Results were conceptualized within a Constructivist Self Development Theory framework. ^