Date of Award


Degree Name

Doctor of Psychology


College of Liberal Arts

Type of Degree


Document Type


First Advisor

Martin Amerikaner

Second Advisor

Paige Muellerleile

Third Advisor

Wendy Williams


The purpose of the current project is to relate disparate lines of research on suicide prevention and help-seeking using Azjen’s (1991) Theory of Planned Behavior (TpB). Two studies examined college students’ beliefs about help-seeking for emotional problems. In Study 1, 37 undergraduates responded to open-ended questions about a variety of help-seeking behaviors. These responses were categorized. Frequencies and percentages were calculated for each category. In Study 2, 143 undergraduates completed two mental health inventories and a TpB survey constructed by the experimenter. A model containing the three TpB predictor variables—attitudes (M = 15.29, SD = 3.57), perceived social norms (M = 12.38, SD = 3.69), and perceived behavioral control (M = 18.04, SD = 2.84)—predicted a statistically significant portion of the variance in participants’ intentions to use campus mental health services, R² = .60, F (9, 96) = 15.79, p <.001. Attitudes (β= 0.75, t = 5.34, p <.001 ), perceived social norms (β = 0.28, t = 2.16, p =.034), and perceived behavioral control (β = 0.38, t = 2.58, p =.011) were strongly related to intentions to use campus mental health services even when causal factors previously identified in the literature were controlled for statistically. This research has implications for campus suicide prevention.


Suicide - Prevention


Suicidal behavior