The IPV-WDA: Developing an Abusive Workplace Disruptions Assessment Using Item Response Theory

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2 Scopus citations


Intimate partner violence (IPV) is a pervasive public health problem impacting millions of women, families, and employers each year. Abusive partners purposively sabotage survivors’ employment to maintain control over them. While previous scales have been developed to measure the impact of IPV on work and economic stability, the current study creates and pilot tests a technology-inclusive measurement of workplace disruptions for survivors of IPV. It was hypothesized that statistical analysis would produce subscales of poor workplace performance and employment instability. The 34-item Intimate Partner Violence and Workplace Disruptions Assessment (IPV-WDA) developed for this study is based on individual interviews with IPV survivors, consultations with expert scholars and advocates, and comparisons of items with existing measurements. The current study used item response theory (IRT-Rasch model) to develop and pilot test the IPV-WDA with a sample of intimate partner violence survivors (N = 41) who had been employed while experiencing abuse. The IPV-WDA showed unidimensionality, high reliability, and validity, as well as items that ranged from common to severe experiences. All items provided unique information on survivors’ experiences of workplace disruptions indicating they should be retained. Based on findings of overall reliable and valid performance, the technology inclusive and comprehensive IPV-WDA should be used in future research. Specifically, researchers should prioritize using it with larger samples so that individual item findings can shape the conceptualization of abusive workplace disruptions and be the target of future intervention research.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Family Violence
StatePublished - Oct 2022

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021, The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature.


  • Domestic Violence
  • Employment
  • Intimate Partner Violence
  • Item Response Theory
  • Workplace Disruptions

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Law
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Sociology and Political Science


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