Fraternities, athletic teams, and rape: Importance of identification with a risky group

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This study examined the relationship between sexual assault and membership in high-risk fraternities and athletic teams. Although past research has identified fraternities and athletic teams as high-risk groups for sexual assault, the findings have been inconclusive. Based on student perceptions, we separated fraternities and athletic teams into high-risk and low-risk groups. A survey of 182 male students, including those who were members of three fraternities and five athletic teams as well as nonmembers, indicated that the high-risk groups scored significantly higher than the low-risk groups on measures of sexual aggression, hostility toward women, and male peer support endorsing sexual aggression. These findings showed that some fraternity or athletic team members are more likely to commit sexual assault than males in the general student population, but this is not true for all such groups. The results help explain inconsistencies reported by previous researchers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1313-1322
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Interpersonal Violence
Issue number12
StatePublished - Jan 1 2000

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Applied Psychology


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