Sexual harassment and its negative consequences continue to affect a large percentage of higher education students in the US. Previous research has identified a limited number of harassment risk factors, and has generally not examined them in combination. In this study, an expanded set of individual, relationship, and community-level risk factors were examined using hurdle models and classification and regression tree (CART) analyses to identify key risk factors for peer and faculty/staff sexual harassment. Secondary data analysis was conducted using data from a sample of 9,285 students from 18 two-year and four-year schools in Minnesota. CART analyses indicated that, for peer sexual harassment, being younger; consuming alcohol more than once a month; attending a four-year school; being transgender, genderqueer, self-identified, or a cisgender woman; and having experienced bullying were the most important risk factors for peer harassment on campus. For faculty/staff harassment, being gay, lesbian, bisexual, questioning, or having a self-identified sexual orientation was the most important risk factor. These and other risk factors were significant in the hurdle models. More research is needed to understand why these factors are associated with harassment. Limitations and implications for prevention programming at higher education institutions are discussed.
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© 2021 The Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality.
PubMed: MeSH publication types
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