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Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Youth populations with an abuse history and their exposure to sexual materials online
by Widuger, Christine, Psy.D., Adler School of Professional Psychology, 2015, 93; 3664151
Abstract (Summary)

The aim of this study was to explore the relationship between a history of abuse and exposure to unwanted sexual materials and solicitation online. Specifically, this study assessed the association between an abuse or trauma history and experiences of online solicitation among youth. Also, analysis included examining whether males or females with a history of abuse had higher rates of online exploitation. Archival data from the Youth Internet Safety Survey (YISS) 1, conducted in the year 2000, and YISS 2, conducted in the year 2005, were analyzed to determine if there was an association a trauma or abuse history and sexual solicitation online. For YISS-1, from a total sample of 1,501 youth, there were 119 youth who reported online sexual solicitation in the past year and 12 who identified a history of sexual abuse in the past year. For YISS-2, from a total sample size of 1,500, there were 105 youth who reported online sexual solicitation in the past year and 20 who identified a history of sexual abuse in the past year. Analysis of this data indicated an association between abuse history and sexual solicitation online. In both samples, children who reported a history of sexual abuse were more likely to report online sexual solicitation (x

2(1) = 18.96, p < 0.001;x</p>

2(1) = 57.34, p < 0.001). Although statistically significant, both ofthese associations were weak (ϕ = 0.113, p < .001; ϕ = 0.196, p =< .001). Due to the small sample size of youth who reported a history of abuse and the results should be interpreted with caution. In addition, for both years 2000 and 2005, there were no significant differences found between male and female youth with a reported abuse history and their sexual solicitation online (x

2(1) = 0.78, p = .38; x

2(1) = 2.40, p = .12). It isimportant for professionals to learn if a history of abuse will carry over into an online world and potentially re-traumatize young individuals. This information would have implications for how the mental health community develops intervention strategies and education programs.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Cox, Christina
School: Adler School of Professional Psychology
School Location: United States -- Illinois
Source: DAI-B 77/01(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Behavioral psychology, Developmental psychology, Clinical psychology
Keywords: Adolescents, Internet, Online behavior, Sexual solicitation, Trauma, Youth populations
Publication Number: 3664151
ISBN: 978-1-339-14576-1
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