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Take the ACEs (and PCEs) Tests

For further reading and information on the Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) study, click HERE

Ten types of childhood trauma measured in the original CDC-Kaiser Permanente Adverse Childhood Experiences Study. Five are personal — physical abuse, verbal abuse, sexual abuse, physical neglect, and emotional neglect. Five are related to other family members: a parent who’s an alcoholic, a mother who’s a victim of domestic violence, a family member in jail, a family member diagnosed with a mental illness, and experiencing divorce of parents. Each type of trauma counts as one.

There are of course many other types of trauma including bullying, racial trauma, witnessing of persons other than your mother being physically harmed, etc. This brief ten questionnaire is the most commonly used form of the ACEs test.

In addition to the ACEs score, we will then share with you the PCEs (Positive Childhood Experiences) questionnaire. Recent research offers evidence that these early positive, protective and nurturing experiences have been shown to offer increased resilience and mitigate the risk for mental and physical illnesses.


To get your ACEs score (ranges from 0 to 10), give yourself one point for each yes you answer to the questions below.

Prior to your 18th birthday (as a prelude to each of the ten questions):

Did a parent or other adult in the household often or very often… Swear at you, insult you, put you down, or humiliate you? or Act in a way that made you afraid that you might be physically hurt?

No___If Yes, enter 1 __

Did a parent or other adult in the household often or very often… Push, grab, slap, or throw something at you? or Ever hit you so hard that you had marks or were injured?

No___If Yes, enter 1 __

Did an adult or person at least 5 years older than you ever… Touch or fondle you or have you touch their body in a sexual way? or Attempt or actually have oral, anal, or vaginal intercourse with you?

No___If Yes, enter 1 __

Did you often or very often feel that … No one in your family loved you or thought you were important or special? or Your family didn’t look out for each other, feel close to each other, or support each other?

No___If Yes, enter 1 __

Did you often or very often feel that … You didn’t have enough to eat, had to wear dirty clothes, and had no one to protect you? or Your parents were too drunk or high to take care of you or take you to the doctor if you needed it?

No___If Yes, enter 1 __

Were your parents ever separated or divorced?

No___If Yes, enter 1 __

Was your mother or stepmother:

Often or very often pushed, grabbed, slapped, or had something thrown at her? or Sometimes, often, or very often kicked, bitten, hit with a fist, or hit with something hard? or Ever repeatedly hit over at least a few minutes or threatened with a gun or knife?

No___If Yes, enter 1 __

Did you live with anyone who was a problem drinker or alcoholic, or who used street drugs?

No___If Yes, enter 1 __

Was a household member depressed or mentally ill, or did a household member attempt suicide?

No___If Yes, enter 1 __

Did a household member go to prison?

No___If Yes, enter 1 __

Now add up your “Yes” answers: _ This is your ACE Score


As mentioned above, your PCE Score helps to include and integrate positive, nurturing and protective experiences when growing up.

According to Jane Stevens of PACES Connection: In 2019, a team of researchers — Dr. Christina Bethell, Jennifer Jones, Dr. Narangerel Gombojav, Dr. Jeff Linkenbach and Dr. Robert Sege — found a dose-response association between positive childhood experiences and adult mental and relationship health among adults who had experienced ACEs, irrespective of how many ACEs they had. This means that it’s really important to have positive childhood experiences, no matter how much adversity you have in your life.


During your childhood did you:

  1. Feel able to talk to your family about feelings
  2. Feel your family stood by you during difficult times
  3. Enjoy participating in community traditions
  4. Feel a sense of belonging in high school
  5. Feel supported by friends
  6. Have at least two non-parent adults who took genuine interest in you
  7. Feel safe and protected by an adult in your home.

Give yourself a score of 1 for each yes answer and your PCE score will range from 0 – 7.

Subtract your PCE score from your ACE score to obtain your PACES (Positive and Adverse Experience) score.