We conducted the Wife Assault Recidivism Risk Appraisal Project, research funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada. The project, headed by Dr. Zoe Hilton, Senior Research Scientist, involved our Research team and colleagues with the Ontario Provincial Police.
Two of the main results of this work are the Ontario Domestic Assault Risk Assessment (ODARA) and Domestic Violence Risk Appraisal Guide (DVRAG). These tools comprise a coherent actuarial system that assesses how likely a man is to assault his partner again, and how his risk compares with that of other wife assaulters. These tools also predict the speed and number of recidivistic offenses and the severity of injuries caused. The scoring criteria include instructions for scoring and interpreting the ODARA in any setting. The DVRAG is for use by forensic clinicians and criminal justice officials who can access in-depth information. The item instructions for both are kept as close as possible to the original research coding criteria.
The principal publications arising from this line of research were:
Hilton, N.Z., Harris, G.T., Rice, M.E., Lang, C., Cormier, C.A., & Lines, K.J. (2004). A brief actuarial assessment for the prediction of wife assault recidivism: The Ontario Domestic Assault Risk Assessment. Psychological Assessment, 16, 267-275.
This article described the development of the Ontario Domestic Assault Risk Assessment (ODARA) including information on its reliability, validity, cross-validation, and other psychometric properties.
Hilton, N.Z., Harris, G.T., Rice, M.E., Houghton, R.E., & Eke, A.W. (2008). An indepth actuarial assessment for wife assault recidivism: The Domestic Violence Risk Appraisal Guide. Law and Human Behavior, 32, 150-163.
This article described the development of the Domestic Violence Risk Appraisal Guide (DVRAG) including information on its reliability, validity, cross-validation, and other psychometric properties. Also reported are comparisons with nonactuarial domestic violence risk assessment schemes.
This work (including detailed scoring instructions and practice materials for both the ODARA and DVRAG) is most fully described in the book:
Hilton, N.Z., Harris, G.T., & Rice, M.E. (2010). Risk assessment for domestically violent men: Tools for criminal justice, offender intervention, and victim services. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.
Fact Sheet about the Ontario Domestic Assault Risk Assessment (ODARA)
ODARA 101, the online training package
Publications about domestic and relationship violence