Shortened Relationship Conflict Tactics Scale


The Shortened Relationship Conflict Tactics Scale is a 30-item measure specifically developed to assess conflict in romantic relationships. It is a revised version of the Conflict Tactics Scale (Strauss, 1979). Fifteen questions are directed to the student about his/her current girlfriend/boyfriend. The other 15 questions are asked about the boyfriend's or girlfriend's behavior toward the student. The questions deal with how the couple has handled disagreements in the past year; two examples, for instance, are "I showed my boyfriend/girlfriend I cared for him/her even though we disagreed" and "I slapped my boyfriend/girlfriend." The violent and nonviolent behaviors are interspersed with one another and do not progress from less aggressive to more aggressive. The items are rated on a seven-point scale, ranging from zero "this has never happened" to 6 "more than 20 times in the past year." Respondents are also given the option to rate the behavior with a "P" to indicate that the behavior had occurred in the distant past, but not in the past year.

This instrument has eighteen scales, nine that reflect how the student behaved toward his/her current boyfriend/girlfriend and nine that reflect how the student's boyfriend/girlfriend behaved toward the student. Six of these scales reflect behaviors that occurred during the past year, while another six scales reflect behaviors that occurred in the distant past but NOT in the past year. Finally the last six scores contrast whether the behaviors had never occurred versus having occurred at sometime during the student's lifetime.

Several of the scales indicated floor effects. Analysts should note that the item, "How long have you been together?", is an open-ended response question that is not included in analyses for this report.

Most of the items and scales are straightforward in use and interpretation. The high internal consistency for most of the scales suggests that these scales should be useful in studying conflict in romantic relationships for couples.

Dataset Names

Raw Dataset Name: CxAR
Scored Dataset Name: RCTySCc


Romantic Relationships, Communication, Emotional Response, Physical Aggression