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Activity Number: 521
Type: Contributed
Date/Time: Wednesday, August 1, 2012 : 10:30 AM to 12:20 PM
Sponsor: Section on Survey Research Methods
Abstract - #304796
Title: Methodological Considerations in Estimating Adolescent Substance Use
Author(s): Joseph Gfroerer*+ and Jonaki Bose and Larry Kroutil and Marsha Lopez and Laura Kann
Companies: SAMHSA and SAMHSA and RTI International and NIDA and CDC
Address: 1 Choke Cherry Road, Rockville, MD, 20857, United States
Keywords: Substance use ; adolescents ; surveys ; mode ; setting ; coverage

The Federal government relies primarily on three major national surveys in tracking adolescents' use of alcohol, tobacco, and illicit drugs. The National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH), Monitoring the Future Study (MTF), and the national Youth Risk Behavior Survey (YRBS) have shown similar trends in substance use over the past decade, but the surveys show significant differences in the levels of use of some substances. The school-based surveys (MTF and YRBS) generally report higher rates of use than the household survey (NSDUH). Prior methodological research has explored how various design features such as mode, setting, privacy, question wording, and coverage may affect substance use estimates from the surveys. This paper explores these factors based on new analyses of combined 2002-2008 data from the surveys. The findings will aid policymakers, program officials, and researchers in understanding and interpreting data from these surveys, and will also be useful to survey statisticians planning designs for other studies of adolescent behavior.

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