First Advisor

Tessa Dover

Term of Graduation

Spring 2021

Date of Publication


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Applied Psychology






Sexual consent, Miscommunication, Blaming the victim, Rape victims -- Psychology



Physical Description

1 online resource (vi, 148 pages)


In this dissertation, four experiments tested whether sharing an ingroup with a sexual violence perpetrator (vs not sharing an ingroup) makes individuals more likely to view the survivor's consent refusal as insufficient. Although most people communicate sexual consent indirectly and nonverbally, individuals often report that indirect and nonverbal consent refusals are an insufficient form of non-consent. These claims of consent miscommunication might be used to justify instances of sexual violence when an individual is motivated to do so. I hypothesize that sharing an ingroup identity with a perpetrator might motivate individuals to justify sexual violence, leading them to report that a survivor's communication of non-consent was unclear and insufficient. I also hypothesize that individuals with a higher preference for social hierarchy might display this effect even more strongly and that the relationship between perpetrator group membership and perceived survivor consent clarity would be mediated by situationally activated social rape scripts. Sharing a group with the perpetrator was associated with perceptions of poorer survivor consent clarity. However, this finding was qualified by insignificant results in three out of four studies. This effect was not stronger among those higher in preference for social hierarchy. Perceived peer norms supporting sexual aggression, but not rape myth acceptance, mediated the relationship between condition and perceived survivor consent clarity. The results of this dissertation suggest that perceptions of survivor consent clarity are impacted by factors outside the consent communication itself; this has implications for understanding victim blaming and improving third-party social support of sexual violence survivors.


© 2021 Alyssa Marie Glace Maryn

In Copyright. URI: This Item is protected by copyright and/or related rights. You are free to use this Item in any way that is permitted by the copyright and related rights legislation that applies to your use. For other uses you need to obtain permission from the rights-holder(s).

Persistent Identifier

Included in

Psychology Commons