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Characteristics associated with domestic violence perpetration: An examination of factors related to treatment response and the utility of a batterer typology

Robert M Sartin, University of Nebraska - Lincoln


This dissertation describes an examination of variables related to domestic violence and particularly domestic violence treatment response for a group of 196 men who were referred for treatment in a men's domestic violence group. The group followed the Duluth model, though it incorporated components from cognitive-behavioral therapy as well. A systematic evaluation of the factors related to self-reported domestic violence perpetration was performed. Demographic, legal, substance abuse, personality, anger, empathy, and generality of violence variables were all found to be associated with domestic violence perpetration. Efficacy of controlling for social desirability when using self-report of domestic violence perpetration was examined, but no evidence for the utility of this control technique was found. ^ Examinations of treatment gains and the variables related to treatment gains were also performed. Participants were found to exhibit improvement in scores on domestic violence, anger, and empathy measures at post-treatment as compared to pre-treatment. The study of empathy, particularly change in empathy using a standardized measure, is a new development for the study of domestic violence treatment outcome. Factors related to treatment completion were also examined. Treatment completers were differentiated from treatment non-completers by one demographic variable; treatment completers were more likely to be employed. ^ This dissertation also examined the batterer typology that has been frequently studied in the literature. This study was able to replicate the three clusters that have previously been found. The three clusters have been referred to by previous researchers as Family only (FO) batterers, Generally violent antisocial (GVA) batterers, and Borderline-Dysphoric (BD) batterers. The efficacy of the clusters was examined, and knowledge of cluster membership was shown to help predict the number of treatment sessions attended. Family only batterers were shown to attend more sessions than were individuals in the other two clusters. Further, utilization of cluster as a between groups variable was shown to help elucidate treatment gains. Limitations of the present study and directions for future research and practice were discussed. ^

Subject Area

Psychology, Clinical|Sociology, Criminology and Penology

Recommended Citation

Sartin, Robert M, "Characteristics associated with domestic violence perpetration: An examination of factors related to treatment response and the utility of a batterer typology" (2004). ETD collection for University of Nebraska - Lincoln. AAI3142099.