Violence is an extreme form of aggression, such as assault, rape or murder.
Violence has many causes, including frustration, exposure to violent media, violence in the home or neighborhood and a tendency to see other people's actions as hostile even when they're not. Certain situations also increase the risk of aggression, such as drinking, insults and other provocations and environmental factors like heat and overcrowding.
Adapted from the Encyclopedia of Psychology
What You Can Do
Gun Violence Prevention
See research on gun violence and learn how to help people in an emotional crisis.
Abuse of Women with Disabilities
Women with disabilities may experience unique forms of abuse that are difficult to recognize — making it even harder to get the kind of help they need.
Warning Signs of Youth Violence
Learn how to recognize danger signs and keep anger from escalating out of control.
Raising children to resist violence: What you can do
Children learn aggressive behavior early in life. Several strategies can help parents and others teach kids to manage their emotions without using violence.
Partner Violence: What Can You Do?
This brochure briefly describes violence in the home and provides advice for victims, abusers, and family and friends.
What makes kids care? Teaching gentleness in a violent world
In a world where violence and cruelty seem to be common and almost acceptable, many parents wonder what they can do to help their children to become kinder and gentler — to develop a sense of caring and compassion for others.
- Find a Psychologist
Talking to your children about the recent spate of school shootings
Every child will respond to trauma differently. Some will have no ill effects; others may suffer an immediate and acute effect. Still others may not show signs of stress until sometime after the event.
How to find help through seeing a psychologist
This brief question-and-answer guide provides some basic information to help individuals take advantage of outpatient (non-hospital) psychotherapy.
Managing your distress in the aftermath of a shooting
You may be struggling to understand how a shooting rampage could take place in a community, even a workplace or military base, and why such a terrible thing would happen.
Intimate Partner Violence
Nearly half of all women in the United States have experienced at least one form of psychological aggression by an intimate partner.
Gun violence and mass shootings — myths, facts and solutions
June 11, 2014, The Washington Post
Can mental health care reform help stop mass killings?
June 3, 2014, The Washington Post
Experts say violence by loners is difficult to predict
May 27, 2014, The Washington Post
Debate over gun control, mental health starts anew
May 26, 2014, CBS News
Medications cut violence among mentally ill
May 7, 2014, Wall Street Journal
Monitor on Psychology Articles
Threat assessment in action
February 1, 2014
Preventing violence against teachers
November 1, 2013
What signals elder abuse and how can it be prevented?
July 1, 2013
Violence against teachers spurs urgent call to action
March 1, 2013
Human Aggression and Violence
A Terrible Thing Happened: A Story for Children Who Have Witnessed Violence or Trauma
November 1 2000
APA Offices and Programs
This area of Public Interest is responsible for disseminating research-based knowledge and information on violence and injury prevention.
Violence Directed Against K-12 Teachers Task Force
This task force draws upon research that has documented associations between school engagement and time on task and aggression behaviors in the classrooms and operates under the assumption that classroom practices and school-wide policies that foster academic achievement will minimize the incidence of violence against teachers.
Women's Programs Office
Improving the status, health and well-being of women psychologists and consumers of psychological services, and addressing issues such as gender disparities, domestic violence, disabilities and depression.
APA Initiatives to Prevent Gun Violence
APA-wide initiatives to prevent gun violence have involved communications with The White House, executive agencies, Congress, other organizations, APA members, the news media and the general public in support of vital mental and behavioral health services, training and research.