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Cyber dating abuse perpetration: evolving methods of adolescent relationship abuse expression through technology

Heinrich, Monica (2018) Cyber dating abuse perpetration: evolving methods of adolescent relationship abuse expression through technology. Master Essay, University of Pittsburgh.

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The rapid progression of technology and interconnectivity has led to new forms of communication and, thus, a new form of adolescent abusive expression occurring as cyber dating abuse (CDA). With recent notoriety and research conducted on traditional adolescent relationship abuse and cyberbullying as separate public health issues, this study aimed to fill the gaps in existing literature by examining CDA perpetration among an adolescent population. Specifically, this research examined the possibility of reciprocal victimization and perpetration experienced between partners within a relationship. Models and theories found in the literature in relation to CDA perpetration were examined. Also, any differences between older and young age groups in either CDA perpetration, or risk factors for CDA perpetration appearing in the literature, were analyzed. It was hypothesized, based on previous research on traditional dating abuse, that there would be a bidirectional and reciprocal nature of CDA perpetration and victimization between partners within a relationship, that the socioecological model would appear most frequently in current literature examining CDA perpetration, and that CDA perpetration would occur more often among older adolescents as compared to younger adolescents. PubMed, Cochrane Library, and PsycINFO databases were searched resulting in a total of 17 non-duplicate, peer-reviewed cross-sectional and cohort studies analyzing CDA perpetration among adolescents with a mean age of 24-years-old between the years of 2010 and 2018. A modified Newcastle-Ottawa Scale was used to assess study validity. Overall prevalences of CDA perpetration varied significantly between studies based on the different definitions, methods, and measurement scales used. CDA victimization and perpetration were found to be highly correlated when examined in most studies, although it was also found that reciprocity of CDA in relationships may occur less than reciprocity of some traditional adolescent relationship abuse forms. While gender differences were examined frequently among descriptive analyses, no single theory was found more than others in the literature investigating or explaining CDA perpetration among adolescents. Lastly, direct comparisons between older and younger age groups in terms of CDA perpetration prevalence, frequency, and risk factors have yet to be established. Results suggest the need for further research on the issue of CDA, as well as a comprehensive and validated measure for better assessment and prevention. Clinically, predicting risk factors and screening methods among the adolescent population will reduce overall prevalence and frequency of this unique and emerging public health issue.


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Item Type: Other Thesis, Dissertation, or Long Paper (Master Essay)
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
ContributionContributors NameEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairBarinas-Mitchell, Emmabarinas@edc.pitt.eduUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Committee MemberTerry, Marthamaterry@pitt.eduUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Committee MemberJones, Kelleykaj25@pitt.eduUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Date: 22 June 2018
Date Type: Completion
Number of Pages: 64
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: School of Public Health > Epidemiology
Degree: MPH - Master of Public Health
Thesis Type: Master Essay
Refereed: Yes
Date Deposited: 17 Sep 2018 21:06
Last Modified: 17 Sep 2018 21:06


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