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Arizona Youth Survey


The data presented here come from the Arizona Youth Survey (AYS). This statewide survey of 8th, 10th, and 12th-graders is conducted every two years by the Arizona Criminal Justice Commission, a state agency. Reported at the state and county levels, the AYS is the largest regular publicly sponsored survey of youth in Arizona. A large sample of students in public, charter, and correctional schools—chosen to reflect the state’s demographics, including grade, gender, and race and ethnicity—voluntarily complete a questionnaire in class. The questionnaire has more than 100 questions. The questions concern self-reported alcohol, drug, and tobacco use, gambling, firearms, gangs, school safety, family issues, and other matters. Data reflects substance abuse on at least one day in the 30 days preceding the survey. The survey also includes items designed to assess the presence of “risk” and “protective” factors that can affect anti-social behavior by adolescents.

Data Source: 

Arizona Criminal Justice Commission:

Data Quality Comments: 

The AYS has been administered for more than a decade, but officials caution that methodological changes have reduced the usefulness of comparing reports issued before 2002 with those following. Because the questionnaire is quite long with many multi-part questions, the number of respondents may decline towards the end of the survey. Thus, the number of respondents may vary from question to question.

iconPercent of Arizona Youth Consuming Alcohol, Cigarettes, or Meth

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Visualization Notes:

Underage alcohol consumption, cigarette smoking, and methamphetamine use are all frequently used as indicator of risk for a variety of behaviors that would affect health, safety, education, and life chances.