Addressing sexual assault within social systems: System justification as a barrier to college prevention efforts.

This article discussed the perception of violence against women on college campuses as an unjust, yet an accepted experience of campus life.


Summary: This article discussed new directions for college sexual assault prevention programs.  The risk of a woman becoming a victim of sexual assault may peak during her enrollment in college.  The system justification theory is used to explain why individuals may accept aspects of their social systems that are unjust.  The authors recommended its usefulness in college programming because it may help dispel rape myths, victim blaming, and sexism.  The authors also suggest that the best prevention programs on campuses incorporate skills training, as well as an examination of existing social systems.             


Applications/Evaluation: This research may be helpful to professionals who are interested in developing college programs focused on rape myth education, victim blaming education, and dispelling sexism.


Limitations: This research brief provided a few citations of existing sexual assault programs ; however the sample programs  were not analyzed in the study. 

Joseph J.S, Gray, M. J., & Mayer. J.
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Journal of Aggression, Maltreatment, and Trauma
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