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Home / How to Use

How to Use

Welcome to VAWnet!

This tip sheet offers general information designed to help you find your way around the newly-designed VAWnet website and locate the information you are looking for. For further assistance, please feel free to contact us.

NEW! View our brief tutorial video here (5:52). If you are unable to access this audio/visual presentation, you can review similar content below.


VAWnet is organized into 6 key areas:

  1. Domestic Violence
  2. Sexual Violence
  3. Grants & Funding
  4. Research
  5. International & Global
  6. News & Events

Within each key area, you will find a variety of categories. Within Domestic Violence and Sexual Violence, you will also find subcategories. These categories and subcategories are referred to as "tags," and are the primary way that we have organized the materials in our collection. (See "What are tags?" below.)

When you click on a tag (either a main- or sub-category), you will be presented with a list of results. These results are organized by type of material, and can be further narrowed down using more specific tags in the filter box provided.

Types of materials include:

  1. Special Collections
  2. Applied Research Materials
  3. Training Tools
  4. NRCDV Publications
  5. NSVRC Publications

You can navigate the results page by clicking on the tabs for each material type. Each tab that appears will tell you (in parentheses) how many of that particular type of material are available. Within each tab, you can sort the results by date published, date added, or alphabetically by title. You will be able to scroll through multiple pages of results (if applicable).

For each record displayed on the results page, you will have the option of clicking on the title or directly on the file. If you click on the title, you will be presented with a summary page, which includes a description of the material with any information deemed relevant to VAWnet's audience, associated files in whatever format is available, distribution information, and related information and links. If you want to access the associated file(s) directly without viewing the summary page, you will notice the links to the available file formats to the right of the document title.

The top bar navigation on VAWnet provides access to full lists of materials that belong to our 5 key file types. With the exception of NSVRC Publications, these lists of materials are each organized using the familiar tab navigation that drives the rest of the website. Special Collections and Applied Research Papers are organized by topic, while Training Tools and NRCDV Publications are organized by sub-types. The same tab-based navigation applies to these pages as described above.

What are tags?
The VAWnet collection is organized using a tag-based structure, which means that each material in the collection is assigned 1-5 key identifiers, or "tags." These assigned tags allow you to find material on the VAWnet website though both navigation (browsing) and searching.


There are two search options available on the VAWnet website:

  1. The general search, available as a text box in the top left corner of every page, or
  2. The advanced search, available through the link directly underneath the general search box.

The general search will find matches for the words or phrases that you enter based on keywords and tags associated with our materials.

The advanced search allows you to look for materials based on keywords, titles, and author or publisher. You can narrow your search by type, and by selecting as many tags as you would like.