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Foshee, Vangie Ann; Bauman, Karl E.; Arriaga, Ximena B.; Helms, Russell W.; Koch, Gary G.; & Linder, George Fletcher (1998). An Evaluation of Safe Dates, an Adolescent Dating Violence Prevention Program. American Journal of Public Health, 88(1), 45-50. PMCID: PMC1508378


OBJECTIVES: This study assessed the effects of the Safe Dates program on the primary and secondary prevention of adolescent dating violence.
METHODS: Fourteen schools were randomly allocated to treatment conditions. Eighty percent (n=1886) of the eighth and ninth graders in a rural county completed baseline questionnaires, and 1700 (90%) completed follow-up questionnaires.
RESULTS: Treatment and control groups were comparable at baseline. In the full sample at follow-up, less psychological abuse, sexual violence, and violence perpetrated against the current dating partner were reported in treatment than in control schools. In a subsample of adolescents reporting no dating violence at baseline (a primary prevention subsample), there was less initiation of psychological abuse in treatment than in control schools. In a subsample of adolescents reporting dating violence at baseline (a secondary prevention subsample), there was less psychological abuse and sexual violence perpetration reported at follow-up in treatment than in control schools. Most program effects were explained by changes in dating violence norms, gender stereotyping, and awareness of services.
CONCLUSIONS: The Safe Dates program shows promise for preventing dating violence among adolescents.


Reference Type

Journal Article

Year Published


Journal Title

American Journal of Public Health


Foshee, Vangie Ann
Bauman, Karl E.
Arriaga, Ximena B.
Helms, Russell W.
Koch, Gary G.
Linder, George Fletcher