Publication Date


Degree Type

Master of Arts


Eating disorders should be a growing a concern in today's society. This study was designed to examine the occurrence of eating disorders in women living in residence halls compared to women living off-campus. The participants for this study were 200 women (105 on campus and 95 off campus) attending Western Kentucky University. Age of the participants ranged from 18 to 47 years, with a mean of 21.1 years (SD=3.70). The instrument used to determine eating disorder symptoms was the Eating Disorder Diagnostic Scale (EDDS; Stice, Rizvi, & Telch, 2000). The EDDS is a selfreport scale consisting of 22 items in which participants answer the questions in several different ways such as yes-no, write-in, Likert, and frequency responses. A series of paired /-tests were performed on the results from the EDDS. See Appendix B. The data revealed that there was a significant body image difference between individuals living on campus and those living off campus (t (199) = -1.91, p < .05); specifically, women who live on campus have a worse body image than women who live off-campus. A significant difference in eating patterns between individuals on living campus and those living off campus was found (t (199) = -2.13, p < .03), indicating that women who live on campus have more pathological eating patterns. No significant difference was found with binge eating between the two groups (t (199) = -0.83,p =. 29). The data supported the hypothesis; there was a difference in the number of selfreported eating symptoms of disorders within the residence hall environment versus the off campus population. The results of this study indicate that individuals living in the residence halls could be at a higher risk for developing an eating disorder than individuals who live off campus. There is a need for educational prevention programs concerning eating disorders within the residence hall environments as well as a need to evaluate the residence halls in order to determine possible causes of this increased risk.



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