Students admit sex assaults

July 18, 2003

A quarter of students have been bullied into having sex and a third have physically assaulted their partner, researchers at Glasgow Caledonian University believe.

In a survey of 250 students at GCU, a third admitted physically attacking their partner. A third said they had themselves been assaulted.

Project leader Lisa Marshall, who presented the findings to last week's psychology and law international interdisciplinary conference at Edinburgh University, said the study was part of an international project on "dating violence" among students in 30 countries.

"All reported very similar levels of violence," she said. "The findings from GCU are by no means unusual."

But Dr Marshall said she was concerned that "verbally articulate" young students were resorting to violence to resolve conflicts. Some 25 per cent said they had been bullied into having sex with their partner while almost 20 per cent said they had bullied their partner into having sex.

About 5 per cent said they had suffered severe coercion, and had been threatened physically or mentally. Women and men were equally likely to attack their partner, but women were more likely to be hurt.

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