Exposure to a Youth-Led Sexual Violence Prevention Program Among Adolescents: The Impact of Engagement

Victoria Banyard, Katie M. Edwards, Emily A. Waterman, Laura M.Mercer Kollar, Lisa M. Jones, Kimberly J. Mitchell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Most studies of peer sexual violence (SV) prevention programs for adolescents focus on program outcomes or feasibility and acceptability; few examine how exposure levels or dosage affects impact. The present study examined the effects of attending multiple community-located youth-led prevention events, as compared to attending one or none, on peer violence (PV)-related attitudes and behaviors. Method: Middle and high school students (Mage at first wave = 13.7; 53.2% female; 76.5% White; 21.0% Native American) responded to surveys across 3 years. Logistic regression analyses compared students who attended one community-based event, two or more events, and zero events on sexual violence victimization, any other violence perpetration/victimization, social norms, denial of the problem of sexual violence, and bystander behaviors. Results: After controlling for exposure to longer prevention leadership training as well as baseline outcome levels, youth who participated in two or more community prevention events showed lower perpetration over time, improved prevention attitudes, and more helpful bystander actions in response to peer sexual violence. No significant differences were noted for attendance at one community-based event. Conclusions: Impact of out of school prevention events on youth behavior depends on more vigorous engagement than one-time contacts. Community-based prevention programs can utilize youth-led engagement strategies to help increase youth participation and resulting benefits.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)403-412
Number of pages10
JournalPsychology of Violence
Issue number6
StatePublished - Feb 14 2022
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Social Psychology
  • Health(social science)
  • Applied Psychology


  • Dosage
  • Leadership
  • Peer violence prevention
  • Youth-led


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