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.
Abuso de Mujeres con Discapacidad
Las mujeres con discapacidad pueden experimentar formas únicas de abuso que son difíciles de reconocer.
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.
Understanding and Preventing Violence Directed Against Teachers
Information to help K-12 teachers to cope with and prevent the occurrence and threat of violent incidents in their classrooms.
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.
Violencia en Contra de la Pareja
Mujeres con discapacidades tienen 40 por ciento mayor riesgo de sufrir violencia por parte de la pareja, principalmente violencia severa, en comparación con mujeres sin discapacidades.
Research explores how youth access to guns is linked to mental health issues
May 4, 2017, NPR
Why battered women won’t always leave their batterers
February 1, 2017, The Huffington Post
Related APA Publications
APA Offices and Programs
This area of Public Interest is responsible for disseminating research-based knowledge and information on violence and injury prevention.
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.
Resolution on Violent Video Games
APA's Task Force on Violent Media updated this resolution to reflect scientific research related to the link between violent video game exposure and aggressive behavior.