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J Forensic Nurs. 2011 Mar;7(1):40-8. doi: 10.1111/j.1939-3938.2010.01094.x.

Sexual assault prevention programs for college-aged men: a critical evaluation.

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  • 1William F. Connell School of Nursing, Boston College, Chestnut Hill, MA, USA.


An unacceptably large percent of women experience sexual assault during their collegiate years and efforts to eliminate sexual assault exist in various forms at numerous universities. The only way to effectively decrease the occurrence of rape on college campuses is to stop the perpetrators. This review examined established sexual assault prevention programs designed for college men to determine if an ideal educational program exists, or if one can be established, to effectively change male attitudes and behaviors about sexual assault. A library search of scientific databases yielded seven studies, published from 2000 to 2007, that met inclusion criteria. Through a variety of interventions, a measurable number of formerly held attitudes about rape myth and the role of the bystanders in an assaultive situation were effectively changed immediately postintervention in several studies. In addition, one study demonstrated sustained behavioral change. These results can effectively be used to provide education for forensic and school-based nurses to guide practice for development of educational programs to successfully change harmful attitudes and beliefs that contribute to rape.

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