Graduation Year


Date of Thesis Acceptance

Fall 5-10-2010

Major Department or Program



Richard Jacks


Non-suicidal self-injury is the direct and deliberate destruction of one‘s own body tissue without suicidal intent. The present study: (1) compares non self-injurious coping strategy use between participants who self-injure and those who do not; (2) extends the Four Function Model (Nock & Prinstein, 2004) to a nonclinical sample of college students; and (3) tests the validity of the Four Function Model, which describes and categorizes 22 possible reasons for self-injuring. Participants included 272 undergraduate students of which 66 self-injured. Participants took an online survey; questions were from the "How I Deal with Stress" inventory (Heath & Ross, 2007) and the "Functional Assessment of Self-Mutilation" (Lloyd-Richardson, Kelly, & Hope, 1997). The study found that self-injurers use coping strategies associated with impulsivity and that they self-injure in order to stop bad feeling and punish themselves. The study also found the Four Function Model requires a different construct when describing why college students self-injure.

Page Count


Subject Headings

Coping, College students, Stress (Psychology), Reasoning (Psychology), Self-Injurious Behavior, Cutting (Self-mutilation), Self-Mutilation -- Burning, Adjustment (Psychology) in adolescence, Social sciences, Whitman College -- Dissertation collection 2010 -- Psychology Department

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Public Accessible Thesis

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