Auburn University Homicide and Intimate Partner Violence Social Science Questions

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Assignment Overview

In this assignment you will be describing the crime of homicide and discussing the impact of this crime on homicide survivors including the bereavement process. There will also be a discussion of intimate partner abuse, underreporting of it by victims, and the dynamics of battering in these relationships. This assignment will help you think critically about the typical homicide victim and the process their family members face. Students will also think critically about the complexities of intimate partner violence in relationships, its measurement and reporting, and theoretical perspectives about it. As homicide and intimate partner violence are complex and pressing contemporary issues an understanding of these factors is fundamental to formulating societal responses to them.

Formatting and Submission Guidelines 

Please note the following formatting standards, minimum requirements and resources:

I expect high quality, formal writing that reflects a thoughtful synthesis of the many principles we have covered, and that exhibits a high level of professionalism. You need to address all question prompts, have clear organization, lucid points, a formal tone, conventional use of language, and formatting in the APA style.

5-7 pages (cover and reference pages do not count toward the minimum page requirement)

APA format APA formatting guide

Use Zoltero or another citation tool, to help you create accurate citations (optional, but recommended, as it will make your life simpler!) 

Use the ASU Writing Center

You must include references to the textbook and course materials as primary resources and include a minimum of 3 high quality outside sources

Required/allowed file types: pdf, doc, docx

Submit by uploading your document in Canvas.

  • Instructions


  • Before beginning the assignment, review the materials for this module.

Module 5 reading and lecture: Homicide Victims

Module 6 reading and lecture: Sexual Violence

  • Module 7 reading and lecture: Intimate Partner Violence


Write a paper that addresses the following:

  • What type of homicide is the most dangerous?  Justify your answer from a law enforcement perspective, a victim services provider’s perspective, and a prosecutor’s point of view.

Describe how survivor’s of homicide victims experience the bereavement process differently from other death survivors (e.g., old age, terminal illness, car accidents).

  • How would you notify parents that their child has been murdered?  How would you incorporate the death notification system currently used?  Would you do anything differently?

What are some of the challenges in defining and measuring intimate partner violence?  How would you define and measure it?

  • Discuss the reasons why victims of intimate partner violence often do not report to the police and offer some practical suggestions for if we should and how we can encourage victims to report their victimization.

Which of the theories regarding the dynamics of battering do you believe is the major reason why spouses stay with their abusers?  Justify your answer.

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