Date of Award

Summer 2019

Degree Type

Masters Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



Committee Chair

Nora Charles

Committee Chair School


Committee Member 2

Michael Anestis

Committee Member 2 School


Committee Member 3

Ashley Batastini

Committee Member 3 School



Non-suicidal self-injury (NSSI) is defined as deliberate self-inflicted damage to bodily tissue without the intent to die. NSSI has been identified as a major health concern, as it is related to both poor psychosocial outcomes and increased suicide risk. NSSI is especially important to understand among adolescents, as age of onset is typically during adolescence and prevalence rates are highest among this age group. One of the most well-established correlates of NSSI is emotion dysregulation. While many studies have examined emotion dysregulation and its subcomponents in relation to self-injury, there has been far less work devoted to factors that may increase one’s likelihood of being emotionally dysregulated. Previous literature suggests that emotion dysregulation is strongly influenced by individual levels of emotion reactivity; however, no studies to date have assessed the combined effects of emotion reactivity and emotion dysregulation in terms of NSSI frequency. In addition, prior research suggests that the cognitive process of rumination may play a role in NSSI engagement. The current study sought to understand the relationships between emotion reactivity, distinct facets of emotion dysregulation, rumination, and NSSI among a sample of at-risk youth in a residential facility. Furthermore, a multiple mediation model was used to test which facets of emotion dysregulation serve as the most powerful mediators between emotion reactivity and NSSI frequency. Findings and implications are discussed.