Feminist Identity Development Scale (FIDS)

The Feminist Identity Development Scale (FIDS) is a 39-item measure of the development of certain feminist ideologies among women. The scale includes five sub-scales or stages: Passive Acceptance, Revelation, Embeddness-Emanation, Synthesis, and Active Commitment.


Geographies Tested: United States of America

Populations Included: Female

Age Range: Adults


Passive Acceptance
1. I don’t think there is any need for an Equal Rights Amendment; women are doing well.
2. I think that most women will feel most fulfilled by being a wife and a mother.
3. One thing I especially like about being a woman is that men will offer me their seat on a crowded bus or open doors for me because I am a woman.
4. I’ve never really worried or thought about what it means to be a woman in this society.
5. If I were married to a man and my husband was offered a job in another state, it would be my obligation to move in support of his career.
6. I do not want to have equal status with men.
7. I think that men and women had it better in the 1950s when married women were housewives and their husbands supported them.
8. I don’t see much point in questioning the general expectation that men should be masculine and women should be feminine.
9. I am not sure what is meant by the phrase “women are oppressed under patriarchy.”
10. I think it’s lucky that women aren’t expected to do some of the more dangerous jobs that men are expected to do, like construction work or race car driving.
11. Generally, I think that men are more interesting than women.
12. I think that rape is sometimes the woman’s fault

13. I used to think that there isn’t a lot of sex discrimination, but now I know how much there really is.
14. It only recently occurred to me that I think it’s unfair that men have the privileges they have in this society simply because they are men.
15. When you think about most of the problems in the world - the threat of nuclear war, pollution, discrimination - it seems to me that most of them are caused by men.
16. It makes me really upset to think about how women have been treated so unfairly in this society for so long.
17. Recently, I read something or had an experience that sparked a greater understanding of sexism.
18. When I see the way most men treat women, it makes me so angry.
19. I am angry that I’ve let men take advantage of me.

Embeddedness - Emanation
20. I just feel like I need to be around women who share my point of view right now.
21. Being a part of a women’s community is important to me.
22. My social life is mainly with women these days, but there are a few men I wouldn’t mind having a nonsexual friendship with.
23. I share most of my social time with a few close women friends who share my feminist values.
24. Especially now, I feel that the other women around me give me strength.
25. If I were to paint a picture or write a poem, it would probably be about women or women's issues.
26. Particularly now, I feel most comfortable with women who share my feminist point of view.

27. Some of the men I know are more feminist than some of the women I know.
28. While I am concerned that women be treated fairly in life, I do not see men as the enemy.
29. I feel that some men are sensitive to women’s issues.
30. Although many men are sexist, I have found that some men are supportive of women and feminism.
31. I evaluate men as individuals, not as members of a group of oppressors.

Active Commitment
32. I want to work to improve women’s status.
33. On some level, my motivation for almost every activity I engage in is my desire for an egalitarian world.
34. I have a lifelong commitment to working for social, economic, and political equality for women.
35. It is very satisfying to me to be able to use my talents and skills in my work in the women’s movement.
36. I care very deeply about men and women having equal opportunities in all respects.
37. I feel that I am a very powerful and effective spokesperson for the women’s issues I am concerned with right now.
38. I am very committed to a cause that I believe contributes to a more fair and just world for all people.
39. I am willing to make certain sacrifices to effect change in this society in order to create a nonsexist, peaceful place where all people have equal opportunities.

Response Options:
Strongly disagree - 1
Disagree - 2
Neither agree nor disagree - 3
Agree - 4
Strongly agree - 5

Scoring Procedures

Mean scores are calculated for each sub-scale.

Original Citation

Bargad, A., & Hyde, J. S. (1991). Women's studies: A study of feminist identity development in women. Psychology of Women Quarterly, 15, 181-201.

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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