Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2011, $899,908)
Despite the seriousness of the problem, there are widely varying estimates of the nature and scope of teen dating violence (TDV). The purpose of this study is to produce a nationally representative estimate of the prevalence of multiple forms of TDV among youth, to document specific characteristics of abusive relationships, to assess TDV risk factors, and to situate this estimate within the environment of adolescents' key social relationships and communications. The study objectives are to:
1. Provide a national portrait of the prevalence of varying categories of TDV victimization and perpetration, including levels of physical/emotional injury, and describe how exposure to these forms of TDV varies by gender, socio-economic status and other demographics.
2. Identify specific conditional attitudes, dating relationship characteristics, and peer network dynamics that are associated with TDV risk, and to determine whether these pathways are uniquely gendered.
3. Investigate specific consequences of TDV to dating relationships, whether the adolescent discloses information about TDV incidents to peers, and peer responses.
Survey data will be based on a stratified random sample of 2,161 adolescents and parents/caregivers representative of all U.S. households using random-digit-dialing (RDD) and a dual-frame estimation methodology for national-level estimation of TDV rates. Two-thirds of the sample will be covered by a landline RDD sample while one third of the sample covered by cell phone RDD. First we will mail out pre-phone letters to increase our response rate by conducting address-matching from phone numbers. NORC's Computer Assisted-Telephone Interviewing (CATI) and related systems for screening and randomly selecting cases into the sample will be used, conducting a 15-minute Parent/Caregiver Survey and a 60-minute Adolescent Survey, overseeing interviewer performance, and monitoring sampling goals. The Parent/Caregiver survey will cover sociodemographic characteristics, the adolescent's mental health and family structure, parental monitoring, and exposure to violence in the household and community. The Adolescent Survey covers TDV, relationship characteristics, peer networks, shared and/or reported TDV experiences, and the consequences/results of TDV (including disclosure to peers and adults, and their subsequent responses, partner reaction, and relationship outcome). Descriptive analyses will be conducted to develop a national portrait of victims and perpetrators of TDV. The research team will use structural equation modeling to assess a theoretically-based Analytic Model.
These data will comprise the first comprehensive national portrait of TDV along with detailed data on extra-familial risk factors amenable to intervention, with implications for refining existing and developing new school and community-based prevention programs. The sample is also designed to become the basis for a follow-up longitudinal study to examine the trajectory of TDV as adolescents move into adulthood, and can be linked to neighborhood-level data to assess the role of neighborhood factors on TDV.