Rape myth acceptance in college students: How far have we come?

Shelly Schaefer Hinck, Richard W. Thomas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

67 Scopus citations


Researchers have emphasized the significant role of rape myth acceptance in individuals' predisposition to engage in sexually aggressive behavior, including rape. The purpose of this study was to examine the current state of rape myth acceptance in college students and the factors which differentiated acceptance vs nonacceptance of rape myths. One hundred fifty-eight primarily Caucasian respondents were provided with two measures of attitudes toward rape and asked the degree to which they agreed or disagreed with each statement. Results indicated that college students reported disagreement with rape myth statements. However, variations in the degree of disagreement emerged; men and individuals who had not attended a rape awareness workshop expressed weaker disagreement with rape myths than women and individuals who had attended a rape awareness workshop. Discriminant analysis of these variables successfully identified a core set of rape myths which differentiated individuals in terms of the degree to which they subscribed to rape-supportive attitudes. Conclusions were drawn regarding rape myth acceptance and the need for further research.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)815-832
Number of pages18
JournalSex Roles
Issue number9-10
StatePublished - May 1999


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