Child sexual abuse (CSA) self-protection and prevention strategy

The Child sexual abuse (CSA) self-protection and prevention strategy scale is a 35-item measure that contains four subscales: Identifying what constitutes abuse; Distinguishing between potential abusers and people they can trust; Knowing that not all secrets must be kept; Recognizing that children have rights. The purpose of this scare is to evaluate the impact of a school-based program to prevent child sexual abuse among elementary school children aged 7 to 12 years.


Geographies Tested: Ecuador

Populations Included: Female, Male, Transgender, Other

Age Range: Adolescents, Children


1. Do you always have to keep a secret?
2. Do boys and girls also have rights like grown-ups?
3. Is it ok to say “no” to a grown-up when they ask you to do something bad?
4. When we talk about sexual abuse, does that mean hitting?
5. Is it ok to say “no” and move away if someone touches you in a way you don’t like?
6. Would you tell a grown-up if someone touched you in a way you didn’t like?
7. Are people who abuse children always strangers?
8. If your friend says she won't be your friend anymore if you don't give herhim your last piece of candy, then you should give it to herhim.
9. If someone touches you in a way that you don't like, its your own fault.
10. Sexual abuse can only happen in places that are far away or dark.
11. If a grown-up tells you to do something, even if it seems bad, you always have to do it.
12. Anyone (even a friend or relative) can abuse a child.
13. You have to let grown-ups touch you whether you like it or not.
14. Sexual abuse only happens to girls.
15. If a grown-up abuses a child it’s because the child has behaved badly.
16. Most people love and protect children.
17. Older children can also try to abuse younger ones.
18. You can always tell if someone can harm us by how they look.
19. Does your body belong to you?
20. If someone caressed you and asked you to keep it a secret, would you keep it?
21. If someone touched you in a way you don’t like and told you that they’d hurt you if you told anyone and that no one would believe you anyway, would you tell?
22. Sometimes adults are wrong.
23. If someone touches you in a way that does not feel good, you should keep on telling until someone believes you.
24. Can people we know and that seem like good people touch us in a way that makes us feel bad or confused?
25. Even someone in your family might want to touch your private parts in a way that feels confusing.
26. If something happens that scares or embarrasses you, is it better to keep it a secret so you do not get into trouble?
27. Is it ok for someone who loves you to give you a hug that makes you feel good?
28. You always have to keep a secret if a grown-up asks you to.
29. Would you tell if someone caressed you in a way you didn’t like but promised to never do it again?
30. If you are in the school bathroom and an older boy starts to touch your private parts, would you know what to do to make him stop?
31. If that grown-up or older kid promises to give you a gift if you keep what happened a secret, would you accept the gift and keep the secret?
32. Is it ok to accept blackmail?
33. If you win a contest and your teacher hugs you to congratulate you, is it ok?
34. When you are scared you can feel it in your body.
35. Do you know what parts of your body warn you when something is dangerous?

Response Options:

YesNoNot sure:
Correct answer - 1
IncorrectNot sure - 0

Scoring Procedures

The correct answer for each question was assigned a value of 1 and incorrect answers and “Not sure” were assigned a value of 0. Total scores for each participating child were calculated by tallying the scores for each of the 35 questions and converting them into a percentage.

Original Citation

Bustamante, G., Andrade, M. S., Mikesell, C., Cullen, C., Endara, P., Burneo, V., Yepez, P., Avila Saavedra, S., Ponce, P., & Grunauer, M. (2019). "I have the right to feel safe": Evaluation of a school-based child sexual abuse prevention program in Ecuador. Child Abuse & Neglect, 91, 31-40.

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Scoring breakdown

Formative Research

Qualitative Research

Existing Literature/Theoretical Framework

Field Expert Input

Cognitive Interviews / Pilot Testing








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