Event Title

Changes in sexual assault coping self-efficacy as moderated by legal advocate social support and age.

Faculty-Student Collaboration

1

Faculty Sponsor(s)

Lynette H. Bikos, Ph.D.

Project Type

Completed quantitative research study

Primary Department

Clinical Psychology

Description

Given the prevalence of sexual assault, it is important to study the differences in traumatic recovery outcomes. Additionally, the legal process is difficult, which can influence recovery outcomes. Legal advocates are possibly an important source of social support after an individual's traumatic experience. The King County Sexual Assault Resource Center's (KCSARC) legal advocacy program assists sexual assault victims through the process of legal prosecution. We evaluated (a) the relationship between social support and coping self-efficacy and (b) how age moderated this relationship.Social support (SS) includes tangible support that is perceived as helpful by the recipient (Barrera, 1986). Generally, SS decreases with age, but the impacts of low SS increases with age (Knoll & Schwarzer, 2002; Matt & Dean, 1993). Therefore, older individuals may be more impacted by having high SS. Coping self-efficacy (CSE) is the ability to adapt to stressful situations (Bandura, 1993). After sexual assault, individuals' CSE lowers in response to stressful situations after the trauma (Kushner, Riggs, Foa, & Miller, 1993). Past research suggested that CSE and SS are strongly correlated (Penninx et al., 1997). Both of these factors appear to promote positive recovery after traumas. However, little is known about the effects of SS from legal advocates specifically. We hypothesized that (a) high legal advocacy social support (LASS) predicted high CSE over the three time-points and (b) that the relationship between LASS and CSE would be stronger for older individuals. For the current study, participants were female clients of KCSARC legal advocacy program over 18 years old. Participants (N = 176) were predominantly female (79%) and Caucasian (55.5%). The participants were asked by the KCSARC legal advocates to complete three surveys once per fiscal quarter. The Modified Domestic Violence Coping Self-Efficacy (MDVCS) measured the confidence in the ability to cope with issues since the domestic violence. Since KCSARC serves sexual assault victims, the measure was modified to appropriately measure this population. The Modified Inventory of Socially Supported Behaviors (MISSB) measured if the advocate was viewed as helpful and supportive. The MISSB was modified to appropriately evaluate the social support from legal advocates to their clients. Hierarchical linear modeling (HLM) was used to analyze the data, and multiple imputation was used for participants that had less than 24% missing data. Results indicated that high LASS did not predict high CSE and that age did not moderate the relationship between CSE and LASS.

Comments

This poster was also displayed at the Western Psychological Association, Sacramento, CA, April 2017

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Changes in sexual assault coping self-efficacy as moderated by legal advocate social support and age.

Given the prevalence of sexual assault, it is important to study the differences in traumatic recovery outcomes. Additionally, the legal process is difficult, which can influence recovery outcomes. Legal advocates are possibly an important source of social support after an individual's traumatic experience. The King County Sexual Assault Resource Center's (KCSARC) legal advocacy program assists sexual assault victims through the process of legal prosecution. We evaluated (a) the relationship between social support and coping self-efficacy and (b) how age moderated this relationship.Social support (SS) includes tangible support that is perceived as helpful by the recipient (Barrera, 1986). Generally, SS decreases with age, but the impacts of low SS increases with age (Knoll & Schwarzer, 2002; Matt & Dean, 1993). Therefore, older individuals may be more impacted by having high SS. Coping self-efficacy (CSE) is the ability to adapt to stressful situations (Bandura, 1993). After sexual assault, individuals' CSE lowers in response to stressful situations after the trauma (Kushner, Riggs, Foa, & Miller, 1993). Past research suggested that CSE and SS are strongly correlated (Penninx et al., 1997). Both of these factors appear to promote positive recovery after traumas. However, little is known about the effects of SS from legal advocates specifically. We hypothesized that (a) high legal advocacy social support (LASS) predicted high CSE over the three time-points and (b) that the relationship between LASS and CSE would be stronger for older individuals. For the current study, participants were female clients of KCSARC legal advocacy program over 18 years old. Participants (N = 176) were predominantly female (79%) and Caucasian (55.5%). The participants were asked by the KCSARC legal advocates to complete three surveys once per fiscal quarter. The Modified Domestic Violence Coping Self-Efficacy (MDVCS) measured the confidence in the ability to cope with issues since the domestic violence. Since KCSARC serves sexual assault victims, the measure was modified to appropriately measure this population. The Modified Inventory of Socially Supported Behaviors (MISSB) measured if the advocate was viewed as helpful and supportive. The MISSB was modified to appropriately evaluate the social support from legal advocates to their clients. Hierarchical linear modeling (HLM) was used to analyze the data, and multiple imputation was used for participants that had less than 24% missing data. Results indicated that high LASS did not predict high CSE and that age did not moderate the relationship between CSE and LASS.