Partner Violence Norms Scale (PVNS)

The Partner Violence Norms Scale (PVNS) is a 7-item measure designed to assess individual and collective perceptions of traditional gender role norms. In particular, respondents are asked how many people in their community would agree with each statement on gender roles (i.e., the division of domestic duties), familial relations (i.e., intra-familial dynamics, family primacy and honor, and unacceptability of intervention in family affairs), women's sexuality, and the acceptability of violence.


Geographies Tested: Nepal

Populations Included: Female

Age Range: Adults


How many members of your community believe in each statement:

1. A husband who helps his wife with the household chores will not be respected by his family.
2. A man's family will think he is a disloyal son if he takes his wife's opinion over his mother's opinion.
3. A woman who openly expresses her sexual desires to her husband is perceived to be vulgar 4. Husbands may use force to reprimand their wives because men should be in control of their families.
5. A woman who complains about her husband's violence behavior is considered a disloyal wife by her in-laws.
6. A women who does not tolerate violence from her husband is dishonoring her family and should not be welcomed home.
7. A person who intervenes when a woman is being beaten by her husband would be considered to be interfering or meddling in the couple's private affairs.

Response options:
No one in my community believes this - 0
Some people in my community believe this - 1
Most people in my community believe this - 2
Everyone in my community believes this - 3

Scoring Procedures

A mean score across the seven items (0-3 points possible for each item) is calculated in order to create an individual-level perception of normative expectation score. These individual scores were then averaged at the ward level to create a measure of collective normative expectations.

Original Citation

Clark, C. J., Ferguson, G., Shrestha, B., Shrestha, P. N., Oakes, J. M., Gupta, J., ... & Yount, K. M. (2018). Social norms and women's risk of intimate partner violence in Nepal. Social Science & Medicine, 202, 162-169.

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Scoring breakdown

Formative Research

Qualitative Research

Existing Literature/Theoretical Framework

Field Expert Input

Cognitive Interviews / Pilot Testing








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