Intimate partner violence among postsecondary students with military experience

Document Type


Publication Date



© 2018 American Psychological Association. The purpose of this study was to explore intimate partner violence (IPV) among student service members and veterans within postsecondary educational settings. Secondary data for the present cross-sectional study were retrieved from the 2011-2014 National College Health Assessment on a nationally representative sample of college students (n = 114,816). Fisher's exact test (Upton, 1992) was used to determine differences in 3 types of IPV (emotional abuse, physical abuse, and sexual violence) between students with and without military experience (ME). Logistic regression was conducted to determine (a) risk factors for IPV and (b) associations between IPV and certain mental, physical, and behavioral health outcomes among students with ME. Although-in terms of descriptive statistics-self-reported emotional abuse (10.700% vs. 9.000%) and physical abuse (23.200% vs. 20.500%) were higher among students with ME, self-reported sexual violence was more prevalent among students with no ME (8.300% vs. 10.200%). Risk factors for IPV among students with ME included identifying as transgender, identifying as heterosexual, being a graduate student, identifying as an "other" race, and being married. The odds of self-reported mental and physical health problems, as well as unhealthy behaviors (such as binge drinking and suicide attempts), were higher among students with ME who had experienced IPV. The emotional, behavioral, and psychological risks evident from our study substantiate the critical need for higher education professionals to place more emphasis on IPV and its consequences on students' success.

Publication Title