Title page for ETD etd-12122011-123815


Type of Document Master's Thesis
Author Skurka, Danielle Jessica
Author's Email Address dskurka@vt.edu
URN etd-12122011-123815
Title The Perception of Social Aggression and Its Consequences on College Women’s Same Gender Friendships
Degree Master of Science
Department Human Development
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Allen, Katherine R. Committee Chair
Benson, Mark J. Committee Member
Few-Demo, April L. Committee Member
Keywords
  • Qualitative Research
  • Indirect Aggression
Date of Defense 2011-12-01
Availability unrestricted
Abstract
The Perception of Social Aggression and Its Consequences on College Women’s Same Gender Friendships

Danielle Skurka

The purpose of this study was to investigate the perceptions that college age women have of social aggression and its consequences in their lives. Qualitative research methods were used to analyze written narrative responses to a question posed to women enrolled in a human sexuality class at Virginia Tech. Although 83 narrative responses were selected, 32 narratives that met criteria were examined using modified analytic induction. A coding scheme was devised and the codes were applied to each narrative and revised many times. The findings of the study suggest that the consequences of social aggression continue for months and even years after incident has occurred. Women indicated that their relationships have changed due to their experiences and that these experiences have made them cautious of friendships with women. Furthermore, many women acknowledged that they perceive men to be more trustworthy and better friends than women because of the “mean” nature of women. Additionally, women had a difficult time acknowledging their own meanness and attempted to justify meanness that they did acknowledge. Further research is needed to explain why women feel they cannot trust other women. Additionally, more research is needed to explain why women perceive men to be more trustworthy and why they perceive that men are better friends when previous research suggests that social aggression levels even out during late adolescence and emerging adulthood.

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