Conflict Tactics Scale

Explore relationship dynamics with Conflict Tactics Scale. Measure conflict strategies and violence in intimate relationships. Gain valuable insights.

Use Template
Written by
Bernard Ramirez
Bernard Ramirez
Reviewed by
Bernard Ramirez

What is a Conflict Tactics Scale (CTS)?

The is a widely used research tool in psychology and social sciences to assess and measure the occurrence and severity of conflict and violence within intimate relationships. Developed by sociologist Murray A. Straus in the 1970s, the CTS provides a structured framework for examining the tactics employed by individuals during conflicts with their partners.

CTS aims to gather data and insights about the various strategies people use to address and resolve conflicts within their intimate relationships. It assesses a range of conflict-related behaviors, including negotiation, compromise, verbal aggression, physical aggression, and sexual coercion. By examining the frequency and severity of these behaviors, researchers can better understand the dynamics and patterns within relationships.

The CTS typically consists of a questionnaire that participants complete to self-report their experiences and behaviors related to conflicts with their partners. The questionnaire includes items that ask respondents to indicate the frequency of specific conflict tactics they have used or experienced and the intensity or severity of those behaviors.

Researchers and professionals use the CTS to gather empirical data about relationship dynamics, identify risk factors for violence, and evaluate the effectiveness of interventions and prevention programs. The scale has been employed in numerous studies across diverse populations and cultural contexts, allowing for cross-cultural comparisons and insights into the prevalence and impact of relationship conflict.

It is important to note that the CTS is a research tool and should not be used as a diagnostic tool or a means to justify or endorse violent behavior. Its purpose is to generate knowledge and facilitate discussions around conflict resolution strategies within intimate relationships, ultimately contributing to healthier and safer relationships.

Check out this video to find out more about Conflict Resolution resources:

Printable Conflict Tactics Scale

Download this Conflict Tactics Scale to explore the dynamics within your client’s relationships.

How does it work?

The Conflict Tactics Scale (CTS) is a self-report questionnaire designed to assess and measure conflict strategies and violence within intimate relationships. Here are the steps involved in using and filling out the CTS template:

Introduction and Instructions

Begin by providing a clear introduction to the purpose of the questionnaire. Explain that the CTS aims to gather information about conflict resolution strategies and behaviors within intimate relationships. Include instructions for participants to read each statement carefully and select the response that best reflects their experiences.

Questionnaire Items

Present a series of statements that cover a range of conflict-related behaviors, such as open communication, compromise, verbal aggression, physical aggression, and sexual coercion. Each statement should be followed by a set of response options (e.g., Never, Rarely, Sometimes, Often, Always) to indicate the frequency or intensity of the behavior.

Anonymity and Confidentiality

Assure participants that their responses are anonymous and confidential. Emphasize that the information provided will be used only for research purposes, ensuring privacy and encouraging honest responses.

Honest and Accurate Responses

Encourage participants to answer the questionnaire honestly and to the best of their knowledge. Stress the importance of truthful responses to ensure the accuracy and reliability of the data collected.

Research Use and Consent

Clearly state that participants' questionnaire completion implies their consent for their responses to be used for research purposes. Reiterate that the information collected will be utilized to gain insights into relationship dynamics, violence risk factors, and interventions' effectiveness.

Printable Version

Provide an option for participants to access a printable version of the Conflict Tactics Scale questionnaire. This allows individuals who prefer a physical copy to fill out the questionnaire offline and submit their responses through a designated method (e.g., scanning, mailing).

Conflict Tactics Scales Example (sample)

The Conflict Tactics Scale (CTS) template is a self-report questionnaire designed to assess conflict strategies and violence within intimate relationships. It consists of statements addressing various behaviors, from open communication to physical aggression, accompanied by response options to indicate frequency or intensity. The template emphasizes anonymity and confidentiality, encourages honest responses, and highlights the research nature of the questionnaire. 

A printable version is also available for participants who prefer a physical copy. The CTS template is a valuable tool for gathering insights into relationship dynamics, risk factors for violence, and intervention effectiveness in a structured and standardized manner.

Download this Conflict Tactics Scale Example:

Conflict Tactics Scales Example (sample)

When would you use this Template?

The Conflict Tactics Scale (CTS) template is a valuable resource for various practitioners and researchers working in psychology, sociology, family studies, and relationship counseling. Here are some instances where this template can be appropriately utilized:

Research Studies

The CTS template is commonly used in academic and empirical research studies on intimate partner violence, conflict resolution strategies, and relationship dynamics. Researchers can employ the template to collect data and measure the occurrence and severity of conflict-related behaviors within intimate relationships.

Clinical Assessments

Mental health professionals, counselors, and therapists can utilize the CTS template in their clinical assessments to evaluate and understand conflict patterns and violence within intimate relationships. It can provide valuable insights into the nature and extent of the issues presented by their clients.

Prevention Programs and Interventions

Organizations and practitioners developing and implementing prevention programs and interventions related to relationship conflicts and violence can utilize the CTS template. It can help assess the effectiveness of such programs and interventions by measuring changes in conflict strategies and behaviors over time.

Educational Settings

The CTS template can be used within educational settings, such as college courses or workshops on interpersonal relationships and conflict resolution. It can serve as a tool for generating discussions, raising awareness, and promoting healthy relationship dynamics among students or participants.

Policy Development and Evaluation

Policymakers, advocacy groups, and government agencies focused on addressing domestic violence and promoting healthy relationships can benefit from the CTS template. It can aid in gathering data and evaluating the impact of policies and initiatives to reduce intimate partner violence and improve conflict resolution skills.

Benefits

Utilizing the Conflict Tactics Scale (CTS) template offers several benefits for practitioners, researchers, and organizations studying and addressing conflict and violence within intimate relationships. Here are some key advantages:

Standardized Measurement

The CTS template provides a standardized and structured approach to assess conflict-related behaviors, allowing for consistent measurement across different populations and research studies.

Data Comparability

Researchers and practitioners can compare and analyze data collected using the CTS template, enabling cross-study comparisons and contributing to a deeper understanding of relationship dynamics and conflict strategies.

Insights into Relationship Dynamics

The CTS template offers insights into individuals' various conflict resolution strategies, shedding light on relationship dynamics, power imbalances, and communication patterns within intimate relationships.

Identifying Risk Factors

Practitioners and researchers can use the CTS template to identify risk factors for violence and abusive behaviors, providing valuable information for early intervention, prevention programs, and policy development.

Evaluation of Interventions

The CTS template allows for evaluating prevention programs and interventions aimed at reducing conflict and violence in relationships, enabling practitioners to assess the effectiveness of their efforts and make data-driven improvements.

Research Validity and Reliability

The CTS is a well-established and widely used research tool, providing a reliable and validated method to measure conflict tactics and violence within intimate relationships.

Cost and Accessibility

The CTS template, often freely available, provides a cost-effective resource for researchers, practitioners, and organizations working on limited budgets or seeking accessible measurement tools.

Why use Carepatron as your Conflict Tactics Scale app?

Carepatron is an ideal choice for utilizing a Conflict Tactics Scale (CTS) app or software due to its specialized features, comprehensive data management, flexibility, real-time monitoring, and collaborative capabilities. The platform offers a robust data management system, data encryption, access controls, and compliance with data protection regulations, ensuring confidentiality and privacy. 

Carepatron also allows for flexible customization, allowing users to tailor CTS templates, response options, and reporting formats to align with study objectives or intervention programs.

Real-time monitoring and reporting capabilities enable researchers and practitioners to track progress, identify trends, and generate comprehensive reports on conflict strategies and violence within intimate relationships. Collaborative features facilitate seamless collaboration among researchers and practitioners, enhancing productivity and knowledge sharing. 

Carepatron integrates with other software systems and data analysis tools, ensuring compatibility and seamless data transfer and analysis. Superior customer support and assistance are also available to users, addressing technical issues, offering training and guidance, and ensuring a smooth CTS app experience. 

By choosing Carepatron, researchers and practitioners can conduct efficient, impactful research or interventions focused on conflict strategies and violence within intimate relationships.

Electronic Health Records Software

References

Straus, M. A., & Gelles, R. J. (1990). How violent are American families? Estimates from the National Family Violence Resurvey and other studies. In M. A. Straus & R. J. Gelles (Eds.), Physical violence in American families: Risk factors and adaptations to violence in 8,145 families (pp. 95-112). Transaction Publishers.

Yodanis, C. L., & Straus, M. A. (2001). Gender differences in the use of physical aggression in heterosexual couples: A meta-analytic review. Aggression and Violent Behavior, 6(4), 301-354.

Stith, S. M., Smith, D. B., Penn, C. E., et al. (2004). Intimate partner physical abuse perpetration and victimization risk factors: A meta-analytic review. Aggression and Violent Behavior, 10(1), 65-98.

Babcock, J. C., Green, C. E., & Robie, C. (2004). Does batterers' treatment work? A meta-analytic review of domestic violence treatment. Clinical Psychology Review, 23(8), 1023-1053.

Who developed the Conflict Tactics Scale?
Who developed the Conflict Tactics Scale?

Commonly asked questions

Who developed the Conflict Tactics Scale?

Sociologist Murray A. Straus developed the Conflict Tactics Scale in the 1970s. Straus and his colleagues conducted extensive research to create a reliable and valid measure of conflict-related behaviors.

What does the Conflict Tactics Scale measure?

The Conflict Tactics Scale measures a range of conflict-related behaviors, including negotiation, compromise, verbal aggression, physical aggression, and sexual coercion. It provides insights into the frequency and severity of these behaviors within intimate relationships.

How is the Conflict Tactics Scale administered?

The Conflict Tactics Scale is typically administered through a self-report questionnaire. Participants read each statement carefully and select the response that best reflects their experiences within their intimate relationship.

Can the Conflict Tactics Scale be used for diagnosing domestic violence?

No, the Conflict Tactics Scale should not be used as a diagnostic tool. While it provides insights into conflict strategies and violence within intimate relationships, it is primarily a research instrument. It is important to consult with trained professionals and utilize appropriate assessment tools to diagnose domestic violence.

Join 10,000+ teams using Carepatron to be more productive

One app for all your healthcare work