Tiffany Eckenrode Program Participation Scale (TEPPS)

The Tiffany Eckenrode Program Participation Scale (TEPPS) was designed to measure the quality of program participation.  Administration of the scale should take less than 10 minutes, and can be done as a computer-based survey or with paper and pencil.

The TEPPS was tested on 331 youth participating in eight community-based afterschool programs in New York City.  Most of the youth were between 14-16 years old; 42% were black, 28.5% were of Hispanic descent; 61.9% were female.

Before using this scale, programs should consider whether they are trying to encourage the types of participation the scale is designed to measure.  If the program does not facilitate avenues for youth to participate in making program decisions, then this is not an appropriate tool.


Administration Method
Number of Questions
Creator(s) of Tool
Tiffany, J.S., Exner-Cortens, D., and Eckenrode, J. (2012). A new measure for assessing youth program participation. Journal of Community Psychology, 40(3), 277-291.
Scoring / Benchmarking
This tool would be administered periodically during participation in the program, and at the end of program participation. It should not be administered before program participation because the individual must have participated in the program already in order to answer the questions. First administration of the tool should occur at a point in program participation that the program would expect individuals would have had sufficient time to form connections with staff members and participate in program planning.

Higher scores indicate higher levels of program participation. Score each item on a scale of 1 to 5 as follows:

Very true for me = 5
Sort of true for me= 4
I’m neutral about this = 3
Not really true for me = 2
Not at all true for me = 1

The overall scale has four subscales measuring:

o Personal Development (7 items): Statements 1, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10; minimum score of 7, maximum score of 35
o Voice/Influence (4 items): Statements 2, 3, 4, 11; minimum score of 4, maximum score of 20
o Safety/Support (4 items): Statements 12, 13, 14, 19; minimum score of 4, maximum score of 20
o Community Engagement (5 items): Statements 15, 16, 17, 18, 20; minimum score of 5, maximum score of 25

Program administrators would score each item on the scale from 1 to 5 as indicated above. Administrators can add the scores from all the items together, where the lowest score could be 20 and the highest score could be 100, to get an overall measure of program involvement. Administrators could also examine the results by subscale to determine in what ways program involvement is stronger or weaker, and where it is improving over time.

Additional technical information about the TEPPS can be found here:
Background / Quality
Cronbach’s Alpha for the Full Scale = .87
Cronbach’s Alpha for Personal Development = .82
Cronbach’s Alpha for Voice/Influence = .66
Cronbach’s Alpha for Social Support = .73
Cronbach’s Alpha for Community Engagement = .68
Is there a cost associated with this tool?
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