Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository

Degree

Master of Arts

Program

Education

Supervisor

Dr. Peter Jaffe

Abstract

The present study examined pre-service teachers’ attitudes and behaviours toward reporting students’ disclosure of sexual violence. Sexual violence is a broad term that describes any violent, physical or psychological act, carried out through sexual means or by targeting sexuality (Baker, Campbell & Straatman, 2012). Teachers play a significant role in recognizing and reporting acts of victimization, as they are among those who are trained to detect and label signs of victimization (Anagnostopoulos, Buchanan, Pereira & Lichty, 2009). For the purpose of this study, a sample of 190 University of Western Ontario Bachelor of Education students completed a questionnaire measuring attitudes toward sexual violence, as well as intervention responses in cases of students’ disclosure of sexual victimization. The study evaluated four main components: (1) gender difference in regards to attitudes towards sexual violence, (2) the influence of pre-service teachers’ past experience with violence on their perceived attitudes, (3) the impact of pre-service teachers’ attitudes about sexual violence on their likelihood to report cases of students’ disclosure of sexual victimization, and (4) the impact of pre-service teachers’ past experience with violence on their likelihood to report cases of students’ disclosure of sexual victimization. The research findings point to the importance of providing pre-service teachers with continuous training and implementation of educational programs.


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