Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Education




Dr. Susan Rodger


Relationships between strength of social support networks, level of self-efficacy, and mental health of women who have experienced abuse were examined from a sample of women who were enrolled in an adult education centre to complete their high school diploma. Participants completed interviews that consisted of questions obtained from a variety of measures and questionnaires, including two separate measures of social support. Level and type of social support were found to be related to factors such as self-efficacy and mental health, with those who had weaker support networks reporting lower levels of self-efficacy and more severe symptoms of depression. Level of social support was predicted by post-traumatic stress disorder, depression, self-efficacy, violence, and coping skills, which accounted for 60.5% of the variance in Norbeck Social Support Questionnaire total functional support. These findings support previous research on the role of social support as a protective factor for those experiencing negative life events.



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