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National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey (NISVS): General Population Survey Raw Data, 2015

Resource Type
Dataset : survey data
  • National Center for Injury Prevention and Control (U.S.)
Other Title
  • NISVS 2015 (Alternative Title)
  • Archival Version (Subtitle)
Collective Title
  • National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey (NISVS) Series
Publication Date
Publication Place
Ann Arbor, Michigan
  • Inter-University Consortium for Political and Social Research
Funding Reference
  • United States Department of Health and Human Services. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. National Center for Injury Prevention and Control
Free Keywords
Schema: ICPSR
demographic characteristics; domestic violence; intimate partner violence; medical history; sexual assault; sexual violence; stalking
  • Abstract

    The National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey is an ongoing, nationally representative survey that assesses experiences of sexual violence, stalking, and intimate partner violence among adult women and men in the United States and for each individual state. The survey is focused exclusively on violence and collects information about: Sexual violence by any perpetrator, including information related to rape, being made to penetrate someone else, sexual coercion, unwanted sexual contact, and non-contact unwanted sexual experiences. ; Stalking, including the use of technologies such as text messages, emails, monitoring devices (e.g., cameras and GPS, or global positioning system devices), by perpetrators known and unknown to the victim. ; Physical violence by an intimate partner. ; Psychological aggression by an intimate partner, including information on expressive forms of aggression and coercive control. ; Control of reproductive or sexual health by an intimate partner. ; In addition to collecting lifetime and 12-month prevalence data on sexual violence, stalking, and intimate partner violence, the survey collects information on the age at the time of the first victimization, demographic characteristics of respondents, demographic characteristics of perpetrators (age, sex, race/ethnicity) and detailed information about the context in which these types of violence occur. The primary objectives of the survey are to describe the prevalence and characteristics of sexual violence, stalking, and intimate partner violence in the United States; who is most likely to experience these forms of violence; the context in which sexual violence, stalking, and intimate partner violence are experienced; and the consequences and impacts of these forms of violence. The data file contains 10,917 cases and 14,963 variables.
  • Abstract

    The primary objectives of the National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey are to describe (1) the prevalence and characteristics of sexual violence, stalking, and intimate partner violence; (2) who is most likely to experience these forms of violence; (3) the patterns and impact of the violence experienced by specific perpetrators; and (4) the health consequences of these forms of violence.
  • Methods

    NISVS employs a dual-frame, stratified random digit dial (RDD) sampling design, with continuous data collection. To meet the challenges of rising non-coverage rates in U.S. landline-based telephone surveys, NISVS implemented a dual-frame design where both landline and cell phone frames were sampled simultaneously. List-Assisted Landline Frame. The landline sampling frame was comprised of hundred-banks of telephone numbers where each bank had at least one known listed residential number. A hundred-bank is the 100 telephone numbers that are generated by fixing the first eight digits of a telephone number and changing the last two digits (e.g., (800) 555-55XX). Known business numbers were excluded from the frame. In addition, non-working numbers were removed after sample selection through screening. Cell-Phone Frame. The cell phone frame consisted of phone numbers in telephone banks identified as active and currently in use for cell phones. At the time the sample was drawn, directory listings of cell phone numbers were not available. Thus, list-assisted screening was not possible. Within-Household Selection. When reaching a household in the landline sample, the interviewer asked about the number of males and females living in the household. In a one-adult household, the adult was automatically selected to participate. In households with only two adults, the person on the phone or the other adult in the household was randomly selected. When there were more than two adults in the household, the adult with the most recent birthday was selected. This within-household selection has been found to be less likely to lead to overrepresentation of females in the pool of respondents compared to using only the most recent birthday method for all households with more than one adult (Rizzo, Brick, and Park, 2004). Because cell phones are personal use devices, the person answering the cell phone was selected as the respondent, if eligible. Nonresponse Phase. To increase participation, NISVS was administered as a two-phase survey. Phase One was the main data collection phase. Respondents in the first phase were offered an incentive of $10 to participate in the survey. A random subsample of non-respondents from the first phase was selected during Phase Two, with the goal of reducing nonresponse and non-response bias. The second phase included a substantially higher incentive ($40) to further encourage participation.
  • Methods

    The questionnaire is divided into several sections and includes information on demographic characteristics of the respondent, health conditions, victimization experiences (including psychological aggression and coercive control by an intimate partner, physical violence by an intimate partner, stalking victimization, and sexual violence). The questionnaire also includes information about perpetrators and follow-up questions. Demographics - Respondents were asked their year of birth, education level, race and ethnicity, place of birth (if not U.S. born, number of years lived in the U.S.), their total household income, and zip code. Health - Respondents were asked about the following health conditions: asthma, chronic pain, diabetes, difficulty sleeping, frequent headaches, high blood pressure, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), difficulty hearing, blindness or difficulty seeing, difficulty concentrating due to a physical, mental, or emotional condition, difficulty walking or climbing stairs, difficulty bathing or dressing oneself, and difficulty doing errands due to a physical, mental, or emotional condition. Victimization - Respondents were asked to report the number of people who had perpetrated a series of violence behaviors (described below) against them. For each perpetrator they reported, they were asked for the initials of the perpetrator and the number of times the perpetrator did the behavior in the respondent's lifetime and in the past 12 months. Psychological aggression and coercive control (PA), which includes behaviors such as insulting, humiliating, being made fun of, and coercive control behaviors: restricted access to money, restricted access to family/friends, keeping track and demanding to know whereabouts, and threats of physical harm. ; Physical violence (PV), which includes behaviors such as slapping, pushing or shoving, being hurt by pulling hair, being hit with something hard, being kicked, being slammed against something, attempts to hurt by choking or suffocating, being beaten, being burned on purpose, and having a partner use a knife or gun against the victim. ; Stalking victimization (S), which includes a pattern of unwanted harassing or threatening tactics used by a perpetrator that causes fear or concern for the safety of oneself or others, such as unwanted phone calls or emails, watching or following from a distance, technology-assisted tactics (GPS), and leaving strange or potentially threatening items for the victim to find. ; Sexual violence (SV), which includes rape (completed forced penetration; attempted forced penetration; alcohol or drug- facilitated completed penetration), being made to penetrate another person (completed; attempted - males only; alcohol or drug-facilitated), sexual coercion (unwanted sexual penetration after being pressured in a non-physical way), and unwanted sexual contact (e.g., being kissed in a sexual way, fondled or grabbed). ; Respondents aged 70 and older were also asked about perpetrators other than romantic and sexual partners for recent psychological aggression, coercive control and entrapment, and physical violence victimization (i.e., past 12 months only). These questions were included as a part of a pilot to assess the utility of using NISVS to capture some information on victimization among older adults. Note: Users are cautioned against using these data to determine the prevalence of elder abuse in the United States or to understand patterns of elder abuse. The NISVS survey does not include the range of victimization (e.g., neglect, financial and other forms of exploitation) that is understood in the field as constituting elder abuse and should not be construed as such. The data are also only for the past 12 months and for those aged 70 and older. The field of elder abuse and other aging related legislation (e.g., Older American's Act) uses ages 60 and older as the cut-off. In this regard, the sample does not cover the population of interest and the limited types of victimization assessed in NISVS preclude making generalizable statements about elder abuse in the United States. Perpetrator Information - All behaviors in the NISVS survey were linked to a specific perpetrator and all questions were asked within the context of that perpetrator. Respondents who reported experiencing violence were asked to provide the interviewer with the initials or a nickname for the individual perpetrator or identify the person in some other general way so that each violent behavior reported could be tied to a specific perpetrator. Respondents were then asked a series of questions about each perpetrator including the perpetrator's age, sex, and race/ethnicity. In addition, for each perpetrator reported, respondents were asked their age and their relationship to the perpetrator, both at the time violence first began and at the last time violence was experienced. Follow-up Questions - Respondents who reported experiencing stalking victimization were asked a series of follow-up questions, including the respondent's age when they first experienced stalking by each perpetrator and the age at which they last experienced stalking. They were also asked whether they were fearful, whether the perpetrator ever damaged personal property or belongings, ever threatened to physically harm them, and whether they believed that they or someone close to them would be seriously harmed or killed. Respondents who reported being threatened with physical harm or physically forced to have sex were also asked a series of follow-up questions, including the respondent's age when they first experienced these behaviors by each perpetrator and the age at which they last experienced these behaviors. They were also asked whether they were physically injured, contracted an STD, or became pregnant as a result of the victimization. A series of general follow-up questions were asked of respondents who reported victimization in the preceding sections of the survey (i.e., psychological aggression, coercive control and entrapment, and physical violence by an intimate partner; stalking; and sexual violence victimization). Respondents were asked about the impact of the violence they experienced by a specific perpetrator. These questions included whether they were ever concerned for their safety; if they were ever fearful (and if so, how fearful); if they had nightmares, were constantly on guard, watchful, or easily startled; if they felt numb or detached from others, their activities, or surroundings; if they were ever injured (and if so, what those injuries included); who they talked with about the behavior(s) (and if so, how helpful these discussions were); their need for and ability to get services (medical care, housing services, community services, victim's advocate or legal services); and whether they ever had to miss work or school.
  • Methods

    ICPSR data undergo a confidentiality review and are altered when necessary to limit the risk of disclosure. ICPSR also routinely creates ready-to-go data files along with setups in the major statistical software formats as well as standard codebooks to accompany the data. In addition to these procedures, ICPSR performed the following processing steps for this data collection: Created variable labels and/or value labels.; Standardized missing values.; Checked for undocumented or out-of-range codes..
  • Methods

    Response Rates: The overall weighted response rate for the 2015 data collection for NISVS was 26.4%. The computation of the weighted response rate reflects the stratified, two-phase, dual-frame survey design used in NISVS combined response rates from Phases One and Two, and combined response rates resulting from the two sampling frames. Using the weighted case counts, the American Association for Public Opinion Research (AAPOR) Response Rate 4 (AAPOR, 2015) was computed separately for each combination of sample and phase. The response rates from the two phases are combined by computing the complement of the product of the non-response rates in each phase. This is equivalent to the Phase One response rate plus the product of the Phase One non-response rate and the Phase Two response rate. The two combined-phase response rates from the landline and cell phone samples were combined into a single estimate by weighting them to their respective proportions in the population based on the National Health Interview Survey (Blumberg and Luke, 2010).
  • Abstract


    • DS1: Dataset
Temporal Coverage
  • Time period: 2015
  • Collection date: 2015-04-02--2015-09-29
  • 2015-04-02 / 2015-09-29
Geographic Coverage
  • United States
Sampled Universe
Non-institutionalized English and/or Spanish-speaking adults aged 18 or older in the 50 states and District of Columbia meeting sampling eligibility criteria. Smallest Geographic Unit: National
From April 2, 2015 through September 29, 2015, a total of 301,614 telephone numbers were sampled. A total of 12,208 adults were interviewed nationally. This includes 10,081 completed (5,758 women and 4,323 men) and 836 partially completed interviews. Approximately 32 percent of interviews were conducted by telephone and 68 percent of interviews were conducted using a respondent's cell phone. For comparison to the United States population, demographic characteristics of the selection weighted landline and cell phone samples, the post stratified combined samples, and the United States population is included below. Consistent with other studies, the landline and cell phone samples yield different demographic distributions. When combined, these samples complement each other and provide estimates that more closely approximate the U.S. population distribution. Combined post stratified estimates are presented for the demographic variables used in weighting to illustrate how distributions are further adjusted to match the population distributions. In addition, demographic variables that were not used in weighting (education, and household income) are included in the table as a further comparison between the sample population and the U.S. population. The sample population, when compared to the U.S. population, had higher levels of undergraduate and graduate college education, a larger percentage of never married respondents, more respondents who were currently married, and a lower percentage of respondents with household income less than $10,000.
Collection Mode
  • computer-assisted telephone interview (CATI)
One or more files in this study are not available for download due to special restrictions; consult the study documentation to learn more on how to obtain the data.
Alternative Identifiers
  • 37632 (Type: ICPSR Study Number)
  • Is previous version of
    DOI: 10.3886/ICPSR37632.v1

Update Metadata: 2020-09-08 | Issue Number: 2 | Registration Date: 2020-09-08

National Center for Injury Prevention and Control (U.S.) (2020): National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey (NISVS): General Population Survey Raw Data, 2015. Archival Version. National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey (NISVS) Series. Version: v0. ICPSR - Interuniversity Consortium for Political and Social Research. Dataset.