Skip to main content

NDACAN Measure Details

Things I Have Seen and Heard


Designed to assess the frequency, through child self-report, of exposure to violence and violence related activities at home and in the community. The instrument, developed for children in Grades 1 and 2, contains 20 items that probe young children’s exposure to violence or violence-related events (e.g., seeing someone arrested). A pictorial format is used to facilitate child comprehension of response options. On the response form five stacks of balls are depicted below each description of violence, each with a different number of balls, ranging from no balls (an empty circle) to four balls (representing many times). LONGSCAN deleted six of the items from Richters and Martinez (1992) 20-item form because of human subjects concerns. Four of these related to the child’s personal experience of violence (items 6, 12, 14, 15) and two (items 10, 18) were related to adult behavior in the home that might be considered reportable as child abuse or neglect. Six items were developed to replace the deleted items (LONGSCAN items 12, 14, 15, 17, 18, and 19). The new items included the witnessing of behaviors that might be construed as minor neighborhood violence or delinquency (threats with guns, threats with knives, gangs, breaking and entering, burglary or thievery). Also an item about feeling “safe in the neighborhood” was added to complement similar items on feeling safe at home and at school. At both Age 6 and Age 8, the EA, MW and NW sites administered the six optional items. The SO and SW sites did not administer these items. These optional questions are contained in a measure entitled Child Exposure to Violence: Optional Questions.


Richters, J. E., & Martinez, P. (1992). Things I Have Seen and Heard: A structured interview for assessing young children’s violence exposure. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, National Institutes of Health, National Institute of Mental Health.