Date of Publication


Degree Type

Honors Thesis


Social Work

First Advisor

Dr. Nicole Cesnales, Assistant Professor, Department of Social Work


Police officer’s actions when working with victims of domestic violence can have a large impact on the individual. Police training changes police officer’s level of empathy for victims of domestic violence, which can then affect the response of the officer in domestic violence situations. This thesis systematically reviews the literature available on police training, empathy, and effects on victims. The review of literature demonstrated that an officer’s level of empathy could have a direct effect on how they respond to domestic violence situations. There is a lack of studies available that analyze police officer’s level of empathy before and after implementation of empathy training. Researchers must conduct studies that are more rigorous in order to provide police officers with the sufficient training for working with victims of domestic violence.