A student, who heads to a bar or party might be more interested in sex than one who is content staying in the dorm and watching television.
Washington D.C.: Underage college-goers, who frequently go to bars and parties, booze five or more drinks in a row, are more likely to have sexually assaulted a woman in the first five semesters of college, warns a new study.
According to researchers from the University at Buffalo in the US, an individual student's likelihood of being a perpetrator increased during semesters in which he attended more parties and bars than his usual amount.
The findings, published in the journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs, suggested that "drinking setting"--rather than drinking, per se--might be the key.
"People drawn to these settings may be at higher risk," said lead researcher Maria Testa, "A student, who heads to a bar or party might be more interested in sex than one who is content staying in the dorm and watching television," she said.
The study was based on survey of nearly 1,000 college men. They were first surveyed as freshmen and then again at the end of each of the next five semesters.
The researchers found that almost 18 percent admitted to sexually assaulting a woman at some point during the study period, which included forced intercourse, "attempted" intercourse and "unwanted contact."
The students were also asked about binge drinking, defined as having five or more drinks in a row. At first, it looked like the men, who binge drank more often were more likely to have sexually assaulted a woman.
The men, who frequently went to bars or parties were more likely to be perpetrators, even when personality traits were taken into account. "Many U.S. colleges have already begun using the programs, which train people in how to recognize and intervene in situations where a potential perpetrator may be zeroing in on a potential victim," Testa pointed.
The students in the study were underage and, technically, should not have gotten into any bars. If laws were enforced, Testa said, that might help address one context related to sexual assault.