181919 Methodological issues in school surveys of adolescent dating violence

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Mariko Geiger , Sociomedical Sciences, Mailman School of Public Health, New York City, NY
Leslie L. Davidson, MD, MSc , Department of Epidemiology, Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health, New York, NY
Niki Palmetto, MPH , Department of Epidemiology, Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health, New York, NY
Deborah A. Fry, MA, MPH , Community Development Program, Edinborough, Scotland
Vaughn I. Rickert, PsyD , Heilbrunn Department of Population and Family Health, Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health, New York, NY
Background: Research indicates that poor academic performance is associated with dating violence and with exposure to violence in the home and community. Little is known about methods in high school surveys of dating violence. An opportunity arose during a survey of dating violence prevalence in high schools in New York City to explore the relationship between academic performance, attendance and response rates and whether voice gender in Audio Computer-Assisted Self-Interview (ACASI) influenced disclosure rates.

Methods: In one school, 69% of students participated and 26% did not respond. 5% actively refused. Class failure was used as a proxy for academic performance to investigate whether responders were academically different than non-responders. The survey used ACASI in two schools, and respondents were randomized to either male or female voices.

Results: Participants were more likely to have passed all classes than non-responders (44.6% vs. 30.3%) and a test for trend was significant. The mean number of courses failed for non-responders (2.61) was significantly higher than for participants (1.59). Excellent attendance was also significantly associated with participation. The prevalence of disclosure of current and lifetime dating violence did not vary by ACASI voice gender for either boys or girls.

Conclusions: Participants are more likely to perform well in school. Since dating violence is associated with academic performance, researchers need to take account of this in estimating the degree of dating violence experienced. In contrast, students do not seem to be affected by the gender of voices in ACASI surveys of dating violence.

Learning Objectives:
To explore the impact of differential academic performance in responders and non responders on studies of adolescent dating violence To understand whether gender of voice affected disclosure of dating violence in audio computer assisted surveys (ACASI) of adolescent boys and girls.

Keywords: Adolescent Health, Youth Violence

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I organized the IRB request for this analysis and I did the background research and I was the lead writer for the abstract and summary
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.