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Date of Award


Document Type

Dissertation - Pacific Access Restricted

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)


Educational and School Psychology

First Advisor

Linda Webster

First Committee Member

Rachelle Kisst Hackett

Second Committee Member

Jonathon Sandoval

Third Committee Member

Lisa Russell


In previous research, community violence exposure has been found to be directly associated with poor academic functioning. Further, internalizing and externalizing problems have been identified as significant mediators of poor academic functioning in children who have witnessed or experienced community violence. This study reports an investigation of the direct and mediated links between community violence exposure and academic functioning in adolescents. A sample of 1,552 adolescents was selected from a public-use dataset from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health (AddHealth). Measures of socioeconomic status, cognitive ability, community violence exposure, internalizing behavior problems, externalizing behavior problems, and academic functioning were constructed from variables in the AddHealth dataset and analyzed using structural equation modeling. Multi-group comparisons were conducted to compare the direct and mediating models by gender and level of urbanicity. Analyses suggest that community violence exposure is directly associated with poor academic outcomes, even after controlling for cognitive ability and socioeconomic status. The direct model applied equally well to adolescents across level of urbanicity, but did not apply equally well to males and females. Support was no! found for !he meditation model.



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