Adolescent dating violence (ADV), including psychological, physical, threatening, and/or sexual abuse between adolescent romantic partners, is an epidemic in the United States, with youth report rates ranging from 15 to 77% for perpetration and 14-73% for victimization. ADV victimization is associated with multiple adverse outcomes in both adolescence and adulthood (e.g., suicidal ideation, substance use, bullying), as is ADV perpetration (e.g., sexually transmitted infections, intimate partner violence in adulthood). Given the high prevalence and profound impact of ADV on youth in the US, many prevention efforts have emerged in the past 20 years. Previous reviews of these efforts have focused primarily on school-based interventions or have broadly reviewed programs including all research design types and outcomes. This review is the first to provide a comprehensive, quantitative synthesis of all existing ADV prevention programs tested using randomized controlled trial designs with a control group, specifically measuring ADV perpetration and/or victimization as outcomes.
Employing a systematic literature search and screening protocol, nine studies were identified for meta-analysis.
Results indicate that ADV prevention programs may decrease the risk of emotional, physical, and sexual perpetration, as well as emotional and physical victimization.
This is the first review to uncover significant intervention effects on the actual occurrence of ADV, with previous reviews only finding effects on outcomes such as ADV knowledge and attitude. Findings suggest that ADV prevention programs are promising and may warrant implementation more broadly with youth, and this review provides methodological suggestions for future research evaluating new ADV prevention programs. Copyright © 2020 The Foundation for Professionals in Services for Adolescents
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