The Youth Bias Victimization Questionnaire (YBVQ)


The study used an intensive, mixed-methods approach to develop a comprehensive youth bias crime violence exposure instrument, the Youth Bias Victimization Questionnaire (YBVQ).


  • The YBVQ Items and question structure were developed through a combination of youth focus groups, cognitive interviews, and expert review.
  • Pilot data was collected on a sample of 854 youth ages 11-21 across three research sites: 1) Boston (n=262); 2) Philadelphia (n=318); and 3) rural and suburban areas of Tennessee (n=274).
  • Subjects were recruited using an intercept strategy in order to obtain larger percentages of minority youth subgroups, with recruitment at youth-serving organizations, targeted community festivals or events, and schools across the research sites.


  • Findings from the study indicate that bias victimization is a common form of victimization, particular for minority youth subgroups with:
  •     63% of the total sample reporting some kind of bias victimization experience in their lifetime.
  •    42% reporting bias victimization in the previous year.
  •     83% of the sample reported witnessing a bias victimization in the previous year.
  • The most frequent bias victimizations both experienced and witnessed by the sample involved bias victimization experiences targeting victims because of race, ethnicity or skin color.
  • Being called names or being ostracized were the most common forms of victimization, while 6% of the sample reported being hit or attacked in the last year as part of a bias victimization.


The YBVQ provides a new tool for researchers interested n collecting detailed information on experiences youth have with bias victimization, from bias-based bullying to more traditionally defined hate crimes.