Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



First Advisor

Dianna Murray-Close


Extant research has found that childhood community violence exposure (CVE) is associated with later maladaptive behaviors, including aggression. However, research has been mixed regarding the influence of CVE on the development of the different forms (i.e., physical and relational) and functions (i.e., proactive and reactive) of aggression. Additionally, it remains unclear whether individual differences in children’s sympathetic nervous system reactivity (SNS-R) moderates associations between CVE and forms and functions of aggression. Thus, the goal of the current study was to add to the current literature by investigating how self-reported CVE, SNS-R to fear, and their interaction at age 7 predict forms and functions of aggression at age 12 in a diverse community sample of 197 children. Findings indicated that blunted SNS-R was related to increases in proactive physical aggression. Additionally, CVE was related to increases in proactive relational aggression. For boys only, a significant interaction emerged such that CVE predicted increases in proactive relational aggression among those exhibiting blunted SNS-R to fear. Implications for theory and intervention are discussed.



Number of Pages

57 p.

Available for download on Thursday, October 23, 2025