The relationship between three different types of child abuse and college academic adjustment

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Pennington, Myra Ann
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Middle Tennessee State University
The current study examined how three different types of child abuse (sexual, physical, psychological) related to college academic adjustment. Potential moderators of the relationship, including perceived social support, mistrust, and gender, also were investigated. Included in the final analyses were 79 (30 men and 49 women) undergraduate students. Participants completed several surveys measuring limited demographic information, social support, mistrust, adjustment to college, grade point average (GPA), and a history of child abuse. Exploratory analyses also were conducted to examine whether pet owners endorsed items indicating their companion animals served as a source of social support. Results indicated that only a history of childhood psychological abuse predicted educational functioning scores on a college adjustment measure. None of the abuse variables correlated with GPA, and no statistically significant moderators of the relationship between child abuse and academic adjustment were found. Additionally, most pet owners did indicate receiving support from their pet.
Academic adjustment, Child abuse, Companion animals, Gender, Mistrust, Social support, Clinical psychology