Global Early Adolescent Study (GEAS) - Freedom of Voice

The Adolescent Empowerment Measure-Voice is a 7-item scale designed to assess and compare the ability that young adolescents (10-14 years old) feel they have to use their voice in situations such as: asking questions, expressing an opinion, or speaking up when something is wrong. This measure was developed using data from the Global Early Adolescent Study (GEAS), a multi-context questionnaire designed to assess the ability for young people to expand their goals and aspirations in order to gain greater autonomy and achieve their goals.


Geographies Tested: Belgium,Bolivia,Burkina Faso,China,Democratic Republic of the Congo,Ecuador,Egypt,India,Indonesia,Kenya,Malawi,Nigeria,United Kingdom,United States of America,Vietnam

Populations Included: Female, Male

Age Range: Adolescents


How often are the following statements true for you?

1. My parents or guardians ask for my opinion on things
2. My parents or guardians listen when I share my opinion
3. My friends ask my advice when they have a problem
4. If I see something wrong in school or the neighborhood I feel I can tell someone and they will listen
5. I can speak up in class when I have a comment or question
6. I can speak up when I see someone else being hurt
7. I can ask adults for help when I need it

Response Options:
Never/rarely - 0
Sometimes - 1
Often - 2
Don't know - 999
Refuse - 996

Scoring Procedures

Mean scores were calculated based on each set of scaled items, which ranged from 1 to 4. Scale-based mean scores were calculated, across scaled items, as the average of summed scores of items, which individually was weighted by its corresponding factor loading.

Original Citation

Zimmerman, L. A., Li, M., Moreau, C., Wilopo, S., & Blum, R. (2019). Measuring agency as a dimension of empowerment among young adolescents globally; findings from the Global Early Adolescent Study. SSM-population health, 8, 100454.

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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