Campus Sexual Assault: Future Directions for Research

Sarah McMahon, Leila Wood, Julia Cusano, Lisa M. Macri

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

67 Scopus citations


Campus sexual assault (CSA) has received unprecedented attention over recent years, resulting in an abundance of federal guidance and mandates. In response, efforts to address and prevent CSA at Institutions of Higher Education (IHE) across the country have grown quickly, including the development and implementation of programs and policies. Because the changes on campuses have occurred at such a rapid pace, a number of gaps exist within the field of CSA research. To ensure that changes on IHE are evidence-based, there is a need to review the existing research available and the inquiry still needed, based on key areas outlined in federal guidance, the expressed needs of campus community members, survivors, and students who commit sexual offenses on college campuses. The purpose of this review is to summarize the empirical research related to CSA gained from the past two decades and identify areas in which further work is needed, specifically related to key areas identified in recent guidance provided to IHE. This article concludes with guidance for research moving forward to help strengthen response and prevention efforts.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)270-295
Number of pages26
JournalSexual Abuse: Journal of Research and Treatment
Issue number3
StatePublished - Apr 1 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • colleges and universities
  • evidence base
  • sexual abuse

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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