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S Afr Med J. 1993 Jul;83(7):490-4.

Risk-taking behaviour of Cape Peninsula high-school students. Part VII. Violent behaviour.

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Centre for Epidemiological Research in Southern Africa, Parowvallei, CP.


The prevalence of a wide range of risk-taking behaviour among high-school students in the Cape Peninsula, South Africa, was investigated. In this article, the results for violent behaviour are presented. Cluster sampling techniques produced a sample of 7,340 students from 16 schools in three major education departments. A self-administered questionnaire was completed in a normal school period. Estimates for each education department were weighted to produce an overall estimate. Of the total sample, 12.7%, 9.6% and 13.8% reported that they had been physically injured by another person at school, at home and in other settings, respectively; 11.0% had injured another person during the previous year; 5% had committed an act of vandalism; and 9.8% of males and 1.3% of females had carried knives at school. Other trends according to gender, school standard, and home language were identified. Males were more likely to be the perpetrators and victims of violent behaviour; for both genders the extent of victimization decreased with increasing standard; and fewer Xhosa-speaking students than students in other language groups perpetrated incidents of violent behaviour. The potential for intervention programmes is assessed in a context where much violence is determined by sociopolitical factors.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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