Global Empathy Scale (GES)

General Information on the Measure
Purpose of the measure

The Global Empathy Scale (GES) measures awareness of political and social rights around the globe, and emotional connectedness to others around the world. The GES was adapted from the scale of ethnocultural empathy (Wang et al., 2003).

Main constructs measured

Intrapersonal competencies

Applicable grade levels

High school students

Publication year for the most recent version


Year originally developed


Related measures
Measure Administration


Method of administration


Number of items


Item format

Six-point Likert-type scale

Administration time

10-20 minutes

Available languages


Fee for use Free and publicly available
Credentials required for administration


Overall score reporting

An overall global empathy score is reported.

Subscore reporting

No subscales are reported.

Scoring procedures

The sum of the item score across all items is used as the total score on the GES.

Interpretive information

No information is available in the references reviewed.

Evidence of Technical Quality
Populations for which technical quality evidence has been collected

Evidence is based on 301 students from three Northern California high schools (Bachen et al., 2012) and 323 college undergraduates from the Midwest (Wang et al., 2003).

Reliability evidence

Internal consistency coefficients were estimated for administrations that took place before and after students played a simulation-based game designed to increase global empathy (coefficient alpha=0.825 for pre-test, coefficient alpha=0.872 for post-test) (Bachen et al., 2012).

Validity evidence
Evidence based on content
Items adapted from the scale of ethnocultural empathy. Developers used literature review and an expert panel to develop and select items (Wang et al., 2003).
Evidence based on response processes
No information available in the references reviewed.
Evidence based on internal structure
No information on the GES available in the references reviewed. Exploratory and confirmatory factor analyses were used on the scale of ethnocultural empathy to support the existence of four distinct dimensions.
Evidence based on relations with other variables
A quasi-experimental study found that students who played a simulation-based game designed to increase global empathy had higher scores on the global empathy scale than their control group peers (Bachen et al., 2012).
Locating the Measure
Obtaining a copy of the measure

Bachen, C. M., Hernández-Ramos, P. F., & Raphael, C. , "Simulating REAL LIVES: Promoting global empathy and interest in learning through simulation games," Simulation & Gaming, Vol. 43, No. 4, DOI: 10.1177/1046878111432108 , 2012, pp. 437–460.

Wang, Y.-W., Davidson, M. M., Yakushko, O. F., Savoy, H. B., Tan, J. A., & Bleier, J. K. , "The scale of ethnocultural empathy: Development, validation, and reliability," Journal of Counseling Psychology, Vol. 50, 2003, pp. 221–234.


Measure summary updated October 3, 2018.