Single-case experimental design evaluation: Refining experimental-design research for use with women living with partner violence

In Progress

Intimate Partner Violence

Ensuring that we maintain maximum safety and discretion for research participants who are living with violence.

The single-case experimental design (SCED) is an under-appreciated but efficient experimental design that uses multiple observations to study a single participant over both pre- and post-intervention periods. It has been shown to be a rigorous design for evaluating behaviour change interventions. Given the intensity of data collection during the pre- and post-intervention periods, we need to ensure that the recruitment and data collection protocols can be carried out in a way that maintains maximum safety for research participants who are living with partner violence.

Can the SCED method be adapted for use with women experiencing violence? Can women who are currently living with intimate-partner violence be safely engaged for intense follow-up over a three-month period?

We will refine the SCED by adding safety precautions to data-collection and recruitment protocols. We will then use the method to see how well it works to evaluate the effectiveness of technologies to promote safety in the lives of women living with partner violence.

This is a partnership with an organization of peers with lived experience with partner violence.

This research makes several important contributions. It expands the knowledge of safe practices for engaging women in research who are experiencing violence. This research also adapts the SCED for use with women experiencing partner violence. If successful, our goal is to serve as an example to expand the use of the use of the SCED study design beyond fields in which it has traditionally been used (e.g. psychology, education).

Intimate Partner Violence

Dr. Patricia O’Campo

One of the first scientists to shine a light on the social determinants of health, Dr. Pat O’Campo is internationally renowned for her scholarship and methods development. She is the Executive Director of the Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute and a Tier 1 Canada Research Chair in Population Health Intervention Research.


  • Dr. Carles Muntaner (University of Toronto)


  • Pearl Buhariwala


  • SSHRC Insight Development Grant


  • Cathy Watts (Peer to Peer Consultants)

Contact Info

Pearl Buhariwala

Research Coordinator