Abstract: Screening for Intimate Partner Violence in College Health Settings: A Review of Screening Practices for Young Adult Populations (Society for Social Work and Research 27th Annual Conference - Social Work Science and Complex Problems: Battling Inequities + Building Solutions)

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SSWR 2023 Poster Gallery: as a registered in-person and virtual attendee, you have access to the virtual Poster Gallery which includes only the posters that elected to present virtually. The rest of the posters are presented in-person in the Poster/Exhibit Hall located in Phoenix A/B, 3rd floor. The access to the Poster Gallery will be available via the virtual conference platform the week of January 9. You will receive an email with instructions how to access the virtual conference platform.

Screening for Intimate Partner Violence in College Health Settings: A Review of Screening Practices for Young Adult Populations

Friday, January 13, 2023
Hospitality 2 - Room 444, 4th Level (Sheraton Phoenix Downtown)
* noted as presenting author
Julie M. Olomi, PhD, Postdoctoral Scholar, University of Central Florida, Orlando, FL
Bethany Backes, PhD, MSW, MPH, Assistant Professor, University of Central Florida, Orlando, FL
Shelleta Ladonice, MSW, Graduate Research Associate, University of Central Florida, Orlando, FL
Amy Reckdenwald, PhD, Associate Professor, University of Central Florida, Orlando, FL
Background and Purpose: College aged individuals report the highest rate of intimate partner violence (IPV) of any age group, and over half of college students have a history of IPV occurring on campus. IPV is associated with negative outcomes such as difficulties in academic performance, mental health, and interpersonal relationships. As a result, colleges have made concerted efforts over the past two decades to better understand victimization on campuses and surrounding communities. However, focus on early identification and intervention remains limited, and screening for IPV is neither common nor standardized across universities. The purpose of this review was to identify best practices and tools for IPV screening on college campuses to inform the development of an IPV screener for use with diverse college students in a college student health services setting.

Methods: This paper reviews the extant research on IPV screening practices in college health settings. Key words were used to search the broader literature base of IPV screening practices within college health settings. Due to the limited research in this area (n=7), the search was expanded to include IPV screening practices in general primary care settings and those used in campus climate surveys. In addition to searching for the literature on IPV screening practices and commonly used IPV screeners and assessment, this review covers literature emphasizing the barriers to screening within the college health setting, the approaches used for administering screeners and assessments, contextual characteristics for successfully administering IPV screeners, and considerations for college students that differ from the general population.

Results: Upon review of the overall literature, results show that college screening practices are rare and inconsistent. For colleges that screen for IPV, the focus remains on female students, sexual assault, and heterosexual relationships. The IPV screeners used have good psychometric validity and are recommended by experts; however, none of these screeners ask about other common forms of abuse that are occurring on college campuses (e.g., cyber abuse), no items capture possible LGBTQ-specific abuse, and there are concerns regarding their validity among diverse samples. Barriers to screening were also found at both the individual and institutional levels.

Conclusion and Implications: Currently validated IPV screeners and/or items from these tools do not meet the IPV screening needs of college students. IPV screeners within student health services have the potential to provide early identification and intervention among this high-risk population. Recommendations include implementing universal, routine, and consistent screening tools; improving institutional infrastructure (e.g., immediate access to support services) and support (e.g., initial and ongoing training); developing validated psychometrics in and for diverse college populations (race/ethnicity, LGBTQ+ friendly items); and using different modes of administration. Implications include the need to develop and validate a screening tool that is specific for use on college campuses.