Document Type

Thesis - University Access Only

Award Date


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department / School

Human Development, Consumer and Family Sciences


It is estimated that twenty to thirty percent of adolescents experience dating violence (Berry, 1995; Levy & Giggans, 1995). Identifying variables that are related to dating violence could help in reducing the rates of this abuse. This study investigated how gender, self-esteem, attitude towards cohabitation, family openness, parents' annual income, and race were related to attitude towards dating violence, and use of reasoning, verbal aggression, and violent acts. The 94 participants in this study were high school students from two schools in California. Each student completed a detailed questionnaire. Demographic information, including gender, parents' annual income, and race, along with scores for self-esteem, attitude toward cohabitation, and family openness were used in a step-wise multiple regression to assess their relationships with attitudes about dating violence; and use of reasoning, verbal aggression, and violent acts in resolving conflicts with dating partners. The results of this study revealed that family openness was significantly related to student's use of reasoning in dating conflicts. Higher scores of family openness were related to more use of reasoning.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Dating violence High school students -- Attitudes



Number of Pages



South Dakota State University