ORCID Identifier(s)

ORCiD 0000-0003-1436-3198

Graduation Semester and Year

Spring 2024



Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Social Work


Social Work

First Advisor

Rachel Voth Schrag

Second Advisor

Donna Schuman

Third Advisor

Rebecca Mauldin

Fourth Advisor

Ling Xu

Fifth Advisor

Beth Anne Shelton


This dissertation is comprised of three papers on United States Military policies related to domestic violence and abuse. The Department of Defense recognizes domestic abuse as a serious problem that interferes with mission readiness and causes harm to individuals. Significant work has explored antecedents of abuse, rehabilitation programs for abusive Service Members, and the experiences of uniformed survivors. However, relatively few empirical studies have investigated the policies that circumscribe domestic abuse and violence and the military’s response thereto.

The first article is a mapping review that synthesizes the peer-reviewed and gray literature related to U.S. Military policies related to domestic abuse. The second paper presents the findings of a narrative policy framework analysis of testimonies given to Congress during hearings related to military-connected domestic violence. The third manuscript is a Transformational Intersectionality-Based Policy Analysis of the Department of Defense Transitional Compensation for Abused Dependents Program, which provides limited financial support to a subset of divorced or maritally separated military-connected spouse abuse survivors. In aggregate, these three papers employed the theories of coercive control, narrative policy framework, and intersectionality in order to examine policies that frame the definition of domestic violence and abuse within a military context and impact the experience of survivorship, perpetration, and military command related to such abuses.


U.S. Military policies, Military-Connected Domestic Abuse, Transitional Compensation


Social and Behavioral Sciences

Available for download on Tuesday, May 12, 2026