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Mary P Koss PhD

Mary P Koss PhD

Regents' Professor

Health Promotion Sciences Department

1295 N. Martin Avenue
Drachman Hall A248
PO Box: 245209
Tucson AZ 85724
(520) 626-3998


Mary Koss, PhD, is a Regents’ Professor in the Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health at the University of Arizona. She published the first national study sexual assault among college students in 1987. She was the principal investigator of the RESTORE Program; the first restorative justice program for sex crimes among adults that was quantitatively evaluated.  She also directed Safety Connections, a restorative justice-based family strengthening program for children under 5 exposed to violence.  She has developed resources for campus use including ARC3 Campus Climate Survey and the STARRSA model for rehabilitation of those responsible for sexual misconduct.  Her ongoing work evaluates a sexual assault primary prevention program focusing on staff of alcohol serving establishments. She recently published a test of the “serial rape” hypothesis among college men. Her credentials document close to 300 publications.  The most recent appeared in American Psychologist and focused on victim voice and in re-envisioning responses to sexual and physical violence, better responses to underserved populations, and greater alignment of funding from the Violence Against Women Act funding with expressed victim needs.   consultations with national and international health organizations and governments.  During her career she has consulted with many national and international health and advocacy organizations. Since 2016 she advised the US Departments of Justice, Education, and the White House Taskforce on Campus Sexual Assault. She was the 8th recipient of the Visionary Award from End Violence Against Women International. She has received awards from the American Psychological Association:  the Award for Distinguished Contributions to Research in Public Policy (2000) and the Award for Distinguished Contributions to the International Advancement of Psychology (2017).  Websites: and

Recent Media References:

Including victims’ voices in response to sexual and physical abuse ...

The better way to support rape victims: put their needs first

A Quest for Justice: Stories from Sexual Harassment’s Front Lines

What’s the difference between sexual abuse, sexual assault, sexual harassment and rape?

Educational Background:

University of Michigan, AB with high distinction, Psychology

University of Minnesota, PhD, Clinical Psychology, Arizona licensed psychologist #1422


Epidemiology of violence, with emphasis on measuring violence against women cross-culturally, restorative/therapeutic justice, violence prevention programs, program evaluation, and public policy focusing on violence against women

Selected Publications

Measurement of sexual aggression perpetration and victimization:

  • Koss, M.P., Gidycz, C.J., & Wisniewski, N. (1987).  The scope of rape: Incidence and prevalence of sexual aggression and victimization among a national sample of students in higher education. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 55, 162-170.  (Paper that this the subject of the book, I Never Called it Rape:  The Ms. Report on Recognizing, Fighting and Surviving Date and Acquaintance Rape.  Harper Collins, 2018).
  • Cook, S.S., Koss, M.P., Gidycz, C., & Murphy, M. (2011). Emerging issues in the measurement of rape victimization. Violence Against Women, 17, 201-218.  
  • Swartout, K. M., Thompson, M. P., Koss, M. P., & Su, N. (2015). What Is the Best Way to Analyze Less Frequent Forms of Violence? The Case of Sexual Aggression.  Psychology of Violence5(3), 305-313.
  • Donde, S. D., Ragsdale, S. K., Koss, M. P., & Zucker, A. N. (2017). If It Wasn’t Rape, Was It Sexual Assault? Comparing Rape and Sexual Assault Acknowledgment in College Women Who Have Experienced Rape. Violence Against Women, 1077801217743339.

Trajectories of sexual aggression across time to inform prevention programming

Risk factors for Perpetration

Prevention Planning and Evaluation

Research Synopsis

Epidemiology of violence, with emphasis on measuring violence against women cross-culturally Restorative/Therapeutic justice, family group decision making, and family strengthening Public health prevention programs, program evaluation, and policy focusing on violence against women

Curriculum Vitae: 

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