Access Type

Open Access Dissertation

Date of Award

January 2017

Degree Type


Degree Name




First Advisor

Chris Trentacosta

Second Advisor

Joanne Smith-Darden


The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between Teen Dating Violence (TDV) attitudes and environmental and self-control constructs using structural equation models. First, adolescents (N=1236) attitudes about TDV were analyzed to determine if consistent distinct subtypes emerged. Distinct subtypes of TDV attitudes were identified: Very Unacceptable, Moderately Unacceptable, Verbal Aggression and Checking Behavior. Next the direct relationship between subtypes of TDV attitudes and self-control and environmental constructs, neighborhood disorganization, extracurricular activities and parental supervision, were investigated. TDV subtypes did indeed show unique relationships with environmental and self-control factors, further supporting the distinct types of teen dating violence (TDV). In particular, parental supervision associated with reduced tolerance for TDV, while self-centeredness, risk-seeking and low frustration tolerance self-control factors, as well as neighborhood disorganization were associated with greater tolerance for TDV. Finally, the potential mediation of the relationship between environmental constructs and TDV subtypes by self-control constructs was tested. Indirect effects of neighborhood disorganization on most subtypes of TDV were found to be mediated by self-centeredness. Parental supervision was directly associated with less tolerance for most types of TDV, but also showed strong indirect effects via greater reported frustration tolerance and less risk seeking. Implications for research, prevention and interventions on TDV are discussed.

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Psychology Commons