Refining the measurement of exposure to violence (ETV) in urban youth



Correlational analysis, classical test theory, confirmatory factor analysis, and multilevel Rasch modeling were used to refine a measure of adolescents' exposure to violence (ETV). Interpersonal violence could be distinguished from other potentially traumatic events; it was also possible to distinguish three routes of exposure (victimization, witnessing, and learning of). Correlations confirmed that ETV subscales are related to measures of aggression, delinquency, and depression/anxiety. Reliability was improved by combining ETV subscales and/or caregiver and youth reports. Valid and reliable measures of ETV are critical to future research in associating violence exposure with common mental health and behavioral outcomes and disorders, and tracking how early violence exposure may affect future outcomes for adolescents. © 2007 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Comm Psychol 35: 603–618, 2007.