Partner Communication Scale (PCS)

The Partner Communication Scale (PCS) is composed of five items that assess frequency of communicating with a sex partner. It was originally pilot-tested with a small sample of African American females ages 14 to 18, but may be used with males, individuals of other racial or ethnic backgrounds, and young adults. Additional information about this tool is available in Fisher, C., Davis, C., Yarber, W. & Davis, S. (2010). Handbook of Sexuality-Related Measures, 3rd Ed. London, Taylor & Francis.


Administration Method
Number of Questions
Creator(s) of Tool
Complete measurement tool reference:
Milhausen, R.R., Sales, J.M., Wingood, G.M., DiClemente, R.J., Salazar, L.F., & Crosby, R.A. (2007). Validation of a Partner Sexual Communication Scale for Use in HIV/AIDS Prevention Interventions. Journal of HIV/AIDS Prevention in Children & Youth, 8, 11 – 33. doi:10.1300/J499v08n01_02
Scoring / Benchmarking
Before analyzing data, code answer options as follows:
Sometimes/1–3 times =1
Often/4-6 times=2
A lot/7or more times=3

Higher values indicate more frequent sexual communication.

No benchmarks have been developed for this measure.
Background / Quality
This tool has been found to be reliable and valid. (Cronbach's alpha =.83).

Other studies using this tool include:

DiClemente, R. J., Wingood, G. M., Rose, E. S., Sales, J. M., Lang, D. L., Caliendo, A. M., Hardin, J. W., Crosby, R. A. (2009).Efficacy of Sexually Transmitted Disease/Human Immunodeficiency Virus Sexual Risk–Reduction Intervention for African American Adolescent Females Seeking Sexual Health Services: A randomized controlled trial. Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, 163, 1112-1121. doi:10.1001/archpediatrics.2009.205

Sales, J. M., Spitalnick, J., Milhausen, R.R., Wingood, G.M, DiClemente, R. J.,Salazar, L.F., et al. (2009). Validation of the worry about sexual outcomes scale for use in STI/HIV prevention interventions for adolescent females. Health Education research, 24, 140-152.
Is there a cost associated with this tool?
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