Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts in Psychology



First Advisor

Denise DeZolt


The purpose of this study was to examine the long term relationship of childhood sexual abuse to school performance, perceptions of school ability, and adult functioning in college women. This investigation found that women who indicated a history of childhood sexual abuse had significantly more problems in psychosocial functioning and reported less social support than women who did not indicate childhood sexual abuse. Interestingly the sexually abused group (SA) did significantly better on 9th grade grade-point average (GPA) than the non-sexually abused group (NSA). However, this trend, though not significant, reversed itself by the 11th grade. In addition the NSA group had a significant linear GPA trend, whereas the SA group had a significant quadratic trend. Generally, there were no significant differences found between the two groups regarding learning styles and school perceptions. In general, the results of this study support and extend prior research in the area of sexual abuse and indicate the need for attention regarding issues and interventions for women who were abused as children. Future directions and limitations of this current study are discussed.



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