Youth Assault-Injury Variation Patterns and Their Dimensional Structure


Wilkerson, Diana F. (2015). Youth Assault-Injury Variation Patterns and Their Dimensional Structure.


Youth assault-injury is 1 of the 5 leading causes of adolescents' death in the United States. Despite public health efforts, the prevalence rates of youth assault-injury and almost all its risk factors have remained consistent in the past 10 years. The purpose in conducting this cross-sectional quantitative study using archival data of the Add Health Wave II in-home survey was to examine the underlying-multidimensional structure of youth assault-injury. Problem behavior theory (PBT) lens and a multidimensional model were used and a structural equation model was conducted to examine the relationships between 22 risk and protection variables, 3 unobserved latent factors, and assault-injury, while controlling for demographics. Three questions were answered that addressed whether the multidimensional model: (a) explained the underlying structure of youth assault-injury among the indicator variables and latent factors; (b) explained the relationships between assault-injury and indicator variables and latent factors; and (c) revealed whether the interaction among latent factors influenced assault-injury likelihood. The study results were affirmative for the 3 questions and explained the relationships between youth assault-injury and various risk and protection behaviors that researchers failed to examine in the past decade. The results also illustrated disagreements with many of the PBT's assumptions. Further research is necessary to affirm or dispute the study's results. The findings highlighted key intervention areas for adolescents' assault-injury prevention and control. Should public health practitioners use these study results, positive social change will occur from saving youths lives and altering their efforts toward positive contribution in their surroundings.


Reference Type


Book Title

Public Health


Wilkerson, Diana F.

Series Author(s)

Anderson, Peter P.

Year Published


Volume Number



Walden University

Reference ID