Exploring Sexual Harassment and Students' Academic Performance: A Case Study of Business Schools of Peshawar City


  • Fazaila Shad Lecturer, Shaheed Benazir Bhutto Women University, Peshawar, KP, Pakistan.
  • Azhar Khan Professor, Institute of Social Policy and Research, KP, Peshawar, Pakistan.
  • Mansoor Ullah Assistant Professor, Department of Management Sciences, University of Chitral, Chitral, KP, Pakistan.
  • Farah Nadir Associate Professor, GGDC, Tarkha, Nowshera, KP, Pakistan.




Sexual Harassment, Academic Performance, Business Schools, Peshawar


Business schools appear to be under-researched when it comes to sexual harassment. Because of the hesitancy of victims to report their experiences, sexual harassment in academia is often a hidden issue. In the last few years, the media and research have paid great attention to it, and the general public is becoming more aware of it. This research work aimed to find out the students' knowledge about sexual harassment, the types faced by students, and further, evaluate up to what extent sexual harassment impedes the academic performance of students. The study also aimed to find various elements leading to the sexual harassment experience of males and females in the classroom. The data of this qualitative study are collected through 30 semi-structured interviews from students of public and private business schools in Peshawar city. The study investigates the effect of sexual harassment on the academic performance of students. The results indicate that it affects the mental health and morale of students and it leads to dissatisfaction. Hence, there is a crucial need to develop sustainable systems to redress the structure through anti-sexual harassment policies.


Ali, U., Sabir, S. A., & Sharif, B. (2022). Knowledge, Distribution, Dimensions, and Barriers in Reporting of Sexual Harassment in Female Medical Students of Public College of Rawalpindi. Life and Science, 3(1), 4-4.

Ahmer, S., Khan, F., & Bhimani, M. (2010). Psychiatric presentations of sexual dysfunction in Pakistan. J Pakistan Psychiatr Soc, 7(1), 18.

Bakken, T. (1994). The responsibility of schools and colleges is to monitor pornography to prevent sexual harassment. Labor Law Journal, 45(12), 762.

Bayar, Y., & Uçanok, Z. (2012). School social climate and generalized peer perception in traditional and cyberbullying status. Educational Sciences: Theory and Practice, 12(4), 2352–2358.

Bennett, J., Gouws, A., Kritzinger, A., Hames, M., & Tidimane, C. (2007). “Gender is Over”: Researching the Implementation of Sexual Harassment Policies in Southern African Higher Education1. Feminist Africa 8: Rethinking Universities I.

Benson, D. J., & Thomson, G. E. (1982). Sexual harassment on a university campus: The confluence of authority relations, sexual interest, and gender stratification. Social Problems, 29(3), 236–251.

Black, K. A., & Gold, D. J. (2008). Gender differences and socioeconomic status biases in judgments about blame in date rape scenarios. Violence and Victims, 23(1), 115–128.

Burgess, A. W., Hartman, C. R., Ressler, R. K., Douglas, J. E., & McCormack, A. (1986). Sexual homicide: A motivational model. Journal of Interpersonal Violence, 1(3), 251–272.

Cantalupo, N. C. (2019). And even more of us are brave: intersectionality & sexual harassment of women students of color. Harv. Women’s LJ, 42, 1.

Cohen, M. A. (2005). Innocent flirting or sexual harassment? Perceptions of ambiguous workplace situations. Representative Research in Social Psychology, 28, 47–58.

Collins, K. L. (1997). Student-to-Student Sexual Harassment under Title IX: The Legal and Practical Issues. Drake L. Rev., 46, 789.

Collins, S. C. (2004). Sexual harassment and police discipline. Policing: An International Journal of Police Strategies & Management.

Fitzgerald, L. F., Drasgow, F., & Magley, V. J. (1999). Sexual harassment in the armed forces: A test of an integrated model. Military Psychology, 11(3), 329–343.

Fitzgerald, L. F., Gelfand, M. J., & Drasgow, F. (1995). Measuring sexual harassment: Theoretical and psychometric advances. Basic and Applied Social Psychology, 17(4), 425–445.

Gillander Gådin, K., & Stein, N. (2019). Do schools normalize sexual harassment? An analysis of a legal case regarding sexual harassment in a Swedish high school. Gender and Education, 31(7), 920–937.

Gruber, J. E. (1992). A typology of personal and environmental sexual harassment: Research and policy implications for the 1990s. Sex Roles, 26(11–12), 447–464.

Haider, S. N. A., & Vaseer, M. A. (2013). The Relationship between Sexual Harassment and Job Involvement in Female Teachers: A Literature Review. Global Journal of Management And Business Research.

Hu, X., Chen, J., & Wang, Y. (2021). University students’ use of music for learning and well-being: A qualitative study and design implications. Information Processing & Management, 58(1), 102409.

Imtiaz, S., & Kamal, A. (2021). Sexual Harassment in the Public Places of Pakistan: Gender of Perpetrators, Gender Differences and City Differences Among Victims. Sexuality & Culture, 1-16.

Kheswa, J. G., & Notole, M. (2014). The impact of pornography on adolescent males’ sexual behavior in the Eastern Cape, South Africa. A qualitative study. Mediterranean Journal of Social Sciences, 5(20), 2831.

Lian, H., Huai, M., Farh, J. L., Huang, J. C., Lee, C., & Chao, M. M. (2022). Leader unethical pro-organizational behavior and employee unethical conduct: Social learning of moral disengagement as a behavioral principle. Journal of Management, 48(2), 350-379.

Leach, F., & Humphreys, S. (2007). Gender violence in schools: taking the ‘girls-as-victims’ discourse forward. Gender & Development, 15(1), 51–65.

Lichty, L. F., & Campbell, R. (2012). Targets and witnesses: Middle school students’ sexual harassment experiences. The Journal of Early Adolescence, 32(3), 414–430.

López, V., García-Quiroga, M., Benbenishty, R., González, L., Squicciarini, A. M., & Sánchez, P. (2020). Sexual harassment by peers in Chilean schools. Child Abuse & Neglect, 107, 104602.

MacKinnon, C. A. (1979). Sexual harassment of working women: A case of sex discrimination (Issue 19). Yale University Press.

Mael, F. A. (1998). Single-sex and coeducational schooling: Relationships to socioemotional and academic development. Review of Educational Research, 68(2), 101–129.

McGinley, A. (2019). Schools As Training Grounds for Sexual Harassment. UNLV William S. Boyd School of Law Legal Studies Research Paper Series.

Mutalip, S. S. M., & Mohamed, R. (2012). Sexual education in Malaysia: Accepted or rejected? Iranian Journal of Public Health, 41(7), 34.

Naz, A., & Ahmad, W. (2012). Socio-cultural impediments to women's political empowerment in Pakhtun society. Academic Research International, 3(1), 163.

Poropat, A. E. (2009). A meta-analysis of the five-factor model of personality and academic performance. Psychological Bulletin, 135(2), 322.

Russell, D. E. H. (1984). Sexual exploitation: Rape, child sexual abuse, and workplace harassment. Sage Publications Beverly Hills, CA.

Sadruddin, M. M. (2013). Sexual Harassment at the Workplace in Pakistan-Issues and Remedies about the Global Issue at Managerial Sector. Journal of Managerial Sciences, 7(1), 113–125.

Stockdale, M. S., Gandolfo Berry, C., Schneider, R. W., & Cao, F. (2004). Perceptions of the Sexual Harassment of Men. Psychology of Men & Masculinity, 5(2), 158.

Street, A. E., Gradus, J. L., Stafford, J., & Kelly, K. (2007). Gender differences in experiences of sexual harassment: data from a male-dominated environment. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 75(3), 464.

Till, F. J. (1980). Sexual harassment: A report on the sexual harassment of students. US Department of Education.

Tara, U., & Ahsan, S. (2020). Cognitive hardiness as a moderator in the relationship between generalized workplace harassment and anger among working women in Pakistan. Journal of Human Behavior in the Social Environment, 30(8), 971-988.

Viner, R. M., Russell, S. J., Croker, H., Packer, J., Ward, J., Stansfield, C., Mytton, O., Bonell, C., & Booy, R. (2020). School closure and management practices during coronavirus outbreaks including COVID-19: a rapid systematic review. The Lancet Child & Adolescent Health.

Wilson, F. (2000). The subjective experience of sexual harassment: Cases of students. Human Relations, 53(8), 1081–1097.




How to Cite

Shad, F., Khan, A., Ullah, M., & Nadir, F. (2023). Exploring Sexual Harassment and Students’ Academic Performance: A Case Study of Business Schools of Peshawar City. Journal of Social Sciences Review, 3(2), 417–426. https://doi.org/10.54183/jssr.v3i2.250