National Violence Against WomenSurvey (NVAWS)

The National Violence Against Women Survey (NVAWS) is a nationally representative survey conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to assess the prevalence and nature of violence against women in the United States. The survey was conducted in 1995 and 1996, and includes information on physical, sexual, and psychological violence experienced by women since the age of 18. The survey also includes information on the characteristics of perpetrators and the consequences of violence. The survey includes questions about the prevalence of physical violence, sexual violence, psychological aggression, and stalking experienced by women since the age of 18. It also includes questions about the characteristics of perpetrators, such as age, relationship to the victim, and whether the perpetrator was under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Additionally, it includes questions about the consequences of violence, such as physical or mental health problems, missed work, or changes in relationships. The survey is an important tool for understanding the prevalence and nature of violence against women in the United States. The data collected from the survey can be used to inform policies and programs aimed at preventing and responding to violence against women.
1. I’d like to ask you some questions about following or harassment you may have experienced on more thanone occasion by strangers‚ friends‚ relatives‚ or even husbands (wives)‚ and partners. Not including billcollectors‚ telephone solicitors‚ or other sales people‚ has anyone‚ male or female‚ ever:
a. Followed or spied on you?
b. Sent you unsolicited letters or written correspondence?
c. Made unsolicited phone calls to you?
d. Stood outside your home‚ school‚ or workplace?
e. Showed up at places you were even though he or she had no business being there?
f. Left unwanted items for you to find?
g. Tried to communicate in other ways against your will?
h. Vandalized your property or destroyed something you loved?
If respondent answered “yes” to one or more of the above questions‚ then she/he is asked:
2. Has anyone ever done any of these things to you on more than one occasion?
If respondent reported being victimized on more than one occasion‚ he/she is asked the following questions:
3. How frightened were you by these things [perpetrator] did to you?
a. very frightened?
b. somewhat frightened?
c. just a little frightened?
d. not really frightened?
4. Did you ever believe you or someone close to you would be seriously harmed or killed when [perpetrator] was following or harassing you?
Note: Scale can be used to assess stalking by non-partners.
This instrument can be found on page 88 of Measuring Intimate Partner Violence Victimization and Perpetration: A Compendium of Assessment Tools‚ available online at:
To be considered a stalking victim‚ respondent has to report experiencing one or more of the stalking behaviors (items a–h) on more than one occasion (#2) and reports ha‎ving been very frightened or feared bodily harm to them or someone close to them (#3 and #4)

Tjaden P‚ Thoennes N. Stalking in America: findings from the National Violence Against Women Survey. Washington (DC): Dept. of Justice (US)‚ National Institute of Justice; 1998. Report No.: NCJ 169592.