Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts

First Advisor

Marilyn Patterson

Second Advisor

Pamela Nickels

Third Advisor

Jesse B. Harris Jr.


The relationship between aggressive behaviors and substance abuse was examined using subjects placed on probation for assault in St. Louis County. These subjects were administered the Substance Abuse Questionnaire, at the probation office, within seven days of sentencing . The Substance Abuse Questionnaire, designed to assess behavior and risk for behaviors including aggressivity, has a validity scale which measures how truthful the individual was while completing the test. Those subjects whose scores on the Substance Abuse Questionnaire were determined to be valid, were considered in this research. The purpose of this research was to examine whether the introduction of legal or illegal substances, such as alcohol or drugs , was related to the commission of a violent act. The results of this research indicated that there was not a statistically significant relationship between substance use and aggressive behavior.