Contraceptive Self‐Efficacy (CSE)

Contraceptive Self-Efficacy (CSE) scale is an 18-item measure of teenage girls' contraceptive use behavior. It includes four factors:(a) conscious acceptance of sexual activity by planning for it (i.e., thinking and talking about sex and seeking contraception), (b) assumption of responsibility for the direction of sexual activity and for using contraception, (c) assertiveness in preventing sexual intercourse in an involved situation, and (d) strong feelings of sexual arousal.


Geographies Tested: United States of America

Populations Included: Female

Age Range: Adolescents, Adults


The items on the following page are a list of statements. Please rate each item on a 1 to 5 scale according to how true the statement is of you. Using the scale, circle one number for each question:

1. When I am with a boyfriend, I feel that I can always be responsible for what happens sexually with him.
2. Even if a boyfriend can talk about sex, I can't tell a man how I really feel about sexual things.
3. When I have sex, I can enjoy it as something that I really wanted to do.
4. If my boyfriend and I are getting "turned on" sexually and I don't really want to have sexual intercourse (go all the way, get down), I can easily tell him "No" and mean it.
5. If my boyfriend didn't talk about the sex that was happening between us, I couldn't either.
6. When I think about what having sex means, I can't have sex so easily.
7. If my boyfriend and I are getting "turned on" sexually and I don't really want to have sexual intercourse (go all the way, get down), I can easily stop things so that we don't have intercourse.
8. There are times when I'd be so involved sexually or emotionally that I could have sexual intercourse even if I weren't protected (using a form of birth control).
9. Sometimes I just go along with what my date wants to do sexually because I don't think I can take the hassle of trying to say what I want.
10. If there were a man (boyfriend) to whom I was very attracted physically and emotionally, I could feel comfortable telling him that I wanted to have sex with him.
11. I couldn't continue to use a birth control method if I thought that my parents might find out.
12. It would be hard for me to go to the drugstore and ask for foam (Encare Ovals, a diaphragm, a pill prescription, etc.) without feeling embarrassed.

If my boyfriend and I were getting really heavy into sex and moving towards intercourse and I wasn't protected .. .

13. I could easily ask him if he had protection (or tell him that I didn't).
14. I could excuse myself to put in a diaphragm or foam (if I used them for birth control).
15. I could tell him I was on the pill or had an IUD (if I used them for birth control).
16. I could stop things before intercourse, if I couldn't bring up the subject of protection.
17. There are times when I should talk to my boyfriend about using contraceptives, but I can't seem to do it in the situation.
18. Sometimes I end up having sex with a boyfriend because I can't find a way to stop it.

Response Options:
Not at all true of me - 1
Slightly true of me - 2
Somewhat true of me - 3
Mostly true of me - 4
Completely true of me - 5

Scoring Procedures

Not Available

Original Citation

Levinson, R. A. (1986). Contraceptive self-efficacy: A perspective on teenage girls' contraceptive behavior. The Journal of Sex Research, 22(3), 347-369.

Psychometric Score

Ease of Use Score

Scoring breakdown

Formative Research

Qualitative Research

Existing Literature/Theoretical Framework

Field Expert Input

Cognitive Interviews / Pilot Testing








Criterion (gold-standard)



Ease of Use


Scoring Clarity


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