Graduation Year


Document Type




Degree Granting Department


Major Professor

Bill Kinder, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Vicky Phares, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Marcia Finkelstein, Ph.D.


hardiness, resiliency, maltreatment, iq, defenses


The relationship between intelligence as measured by the Shipley Institute of Living Scale, Coping Processes as measured by the Ways of Coping Scale and resilience as measured by Global Severity Index of the Brief Symptom Inventory, was examined in 88 individuals who had been sexually abused and 88 individuals who had not been sexually abused. The study attempted to assess whether more intelligent individuals and those who used certain coping styles would experience less distress in the face of adversity than individuals with lower levels of intelligence and who used different coping styles. The results indicated that intelligence was not associated with resilience in either the sexually abused or the non-sexually abused group. In the sexually abused group, the coping processes of Confronting, Distancing, Self Controlling, Accepting Responsibility, Escape Avoidance, Planful Problem Solving and Positive Reappraisal were all significantly positively correlated with the GSI. In the non-sexually abused group, however, the coping processes of Self Controlling, Accepting Responsibility and Escape Avoidance were all significantly positively correlated with the GSI. Results of a simultaneous regression indicated that in the sexually abused group, none of the variables that were correlated with resilience accounted for a significant amount of variance in GSI scores. In the sample of individuals who had not been sexually abused, the coping strategy of Escape Avoidance was the only individual predictor accounting for a significant amount of the GSI variance in the model. Possible reasons and implications of these results are discussed.