Online administration of questionnaires assessing psychological, physical, and sexual aggression: Establishing psychometric equivalence

Rebecca L. Brock*, Robin A. Barry, Erika Lawrence, Jaci Rolffs, Jodi Cerretani, Amie Zarling

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


Objective: The study of intimate partner violence has long been a funding priority and a focus of research, necessitating the assessment of aggression with large samples. In response, online assessment has become increasingly common, particularly when studying college students. However, it is unclear whether measures of partner aggression can be reliably and validly administered online. The purpose of the present study was to investigate the psychometric equivalence of written and Internet formats of questionnaires commonly used in the study of partner aggression to inform researchers considering a transition to online data collection. Method: Self-report questionnaires assessing psychological and physical aggression as well as measures of related interpersonal and intrapersonal constructs were administered to 169 young adults in committed dating relationships. The same measures were administered twice via written and/or online methods over a 2-week period. Method order was counterbalanced among participants and temporal stability was controlled. Results: Measures of aggression generally demonstrated psychometric equivalence across methods with few exceptions. Conclusions: Results support the use of online versions of the CTS2 and MDEAS, and highlight the utility of collecting aggression data online. Results suggest that participants may provide more reliable and dependable responses under conditions of perceived anonymity afforded by online administration of aggression questionnaires.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)294-304
Number of pages11
JournalPsychology of Violence
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 1 2015


  • Internet
  • domestic violence
  • intimate partner violence
  • online
  • physical aggression
  • psychological aggression
  • psychometrics
  • sexual coercion

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Health(social science)
  • Applied Psychology


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