Doctoral Dissertations

Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Public Health

Major Professor

Laurie L. Meschke

Committee Members

Clea McNeely, Jennifer Jabson Tree, Lois Presser


Sexual violence is a pervasive public health issue that disproportionately impacts adolescents and young adults. Educational programs implemented in middle school, high school, and college settings are commonly used to address this issue. Ongoing process and outcome evaluation of these programs is needed to assess effectiveness and engage in continuous quality improvement. In this dissertation I present research that originated from two program evaluations, one of a college peer health education program and another of a state-wide prevention program for middle and high school students.

Chapter 2 explores the barriers to recruitment and retention of college men as peer health educators, a barrier to effective program implementation. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 17 undergraduate male student leaders, including male peer educators. Findings indicate that perceptions of gender norms and discomfort with the topic of sexual assault are barriers to male recruitment and resistance from women toward men discussing sexual assault is a barrier to male retention.

Chapter 3 provides a systematic approach for development of tailored outcome evaluation measures for health promotion programs. Document analysis was conducted of materials used for survey development during a state-wide evaluation project. Findings were used to create a practical, systematic approach to survey development referred to as the Measurement Adoption, Adaptation, and Development Approach (MAADA).

Chapter 4 examines the application of MAADA to survey development for four evidence-based sexual violence prevention curricula. Document analysis was conducted to identify the strengths and challenges of applying each step of MAADA to each of the four curricula. Findings indicate that MAADA can be useful in streamlining and systematizing evaluation survey development, especially when curricular learning objectives require clarification, measures need adaptation to accurately assess learning objectives, or reduction of measures is necessary to enhance the feasibly of survey administration. A complete set of learning objectives and evaluation measures created using MAADA are also provided.

In sum, the findings of these studies support effective implementation and evaluation of health promotion and sexual violence prevention programs, which in turn ideally support program effectiveness and reduction of sexual violence.

Available for download on Saturday, May 15, 2027

Files over 3MB may be slow to open. For best results, right-click and select "save as..."