National Archive of Computerized Data on Aging

This study is maintained and distributed by the National Archive of Computerized Data on Aging (NACDA), the aging program within ICPSR. NACDA is sponsored by the National Institute on Aging (NIA) at the National Institutes of Heath (NIH).

Teenage Attitudes and Practices Survey, 1989: [United States] (ICPSR 9786)

Principal Investigator(s): United States Department of Health and Human Services. National Center for Health Statistics


In this follow-up to the National Health Interview Survey (NHIS), teenagers were interviewed to obtain information on tobacco use, including measures of prevalence, knowledge and attitudes, and predictors of taking up smoking. Respondents were asked if they smoked or used chewing tobacco or snuff, or had in the past. If so, they were questioned as to when they started, how much they smoked, chewed, or snuffed during the last month, where they bought cigarettes, which brand of cigarettes, chewing tobacco, or snuff they usually bought, how many times they tried to stop these habits, and what was the longest time they stopped smoking cigarettes since they started smoking regularly. Nonsmokers were asked if they thought they might start smoking, if they had experimented with cigarette smoking, if they had ever been offered a cigarette, and how difficult it would be to obtain tobacco if they wanted to. The survey asked respondents if any of their household members, teachers, or friends smoked, if they had heard anything about the health risks of tobacco use on television, radio, or in newspapers or magazines, and if they believed that chewing tobacco or using snuff causes cancer. Attitudes toward tobacco use were also probed with questions such as whether respondents disliked being around people who smoked, whether they believed it was safe to smoke for only a year or two, if they preferred to date people who didn't smoke, if they thought they could stop smoking any time they wanted to, whether they thought their friends approved or disapproved of their smoking, chewing, or snuffing, and if they thought their parents would mind if they smoked when they were older. Respondents were also asked if they believed there was any harm in having an occasional cigarette, and if they believed smoking helps people to relax, to keep down their weight, and to reduce boredom and stress. In addition to questions about tobacco use, the survey queried respondents about their attitudes regarding seat belts, fitness, alcohol, marijuana, drugs in general, school, and diet. They were also asked whether, during the last year, they had been in an accident or physical fight, had been in a car with a drunk driver, or had ridden on a motorcycle, and how often they had trouble going to sleep, felt unhappy or depressed, felt hopeless about the future, felt nervous or tense, or worried too much. Demographic and socioeconomic information provided in the data file includes respondents' race, education, and geographic region, reference persons' race, education, occupation, and marital status, presence of parent(s) or other adult relative in household, family income, and education of the adult.

Access Notes

  • The public-use data files in this collection are available for access by the general public. Access does not require affiliation with an ICPSR member institution.


DS1:  Data File - Download All Files (5.135 MB)
ASCII + SPSS Setup   
DS2:  SAS Control Cards - Download All Files (0.186 MB)

ASCII + SAS Setup   
DS4:  August 1992 Errata - Download All Files (0.017 MB)

Study Description


U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services, National Center for Health Statistics. TEENAGE ATTITUDES AND PRACTICES SURVEY, 1989: [UNITED STATES]. Hyattsville, MD: U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services, National Center for Health Statistics [producer], 1989. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 1992.

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Scope of Study

Subject Terms:    alcohol, attitudes, driving under the influence, drugs, health, marijuana, sleep, smoking, stress, teenagers, tobacco products, tobacco use

Geographic Coverage:    United States

Time Period:   

  • 1988--1989

Date of Collection:   

  • 1988--1989

Universe:    Civilian noninstitutionalized teenagers, aged 12-18, residing in the United States.

Data Type(s):    survey data

Data Collection Notes:

Per agreement with NCHS, ICPSR distributes the data file(s) and technical documentation in this collection in their original form as prepared by NCHS.


Sample:    A sample of 12,097 teenagers was drawn from the last two quarters of the 1988 NHIS and the first two quarters of the 1989 NHIS. NHIS households were selected by stratified multistage probability area sampling.

Data Source:

telephone interviews, and self-enumerated mail questionnaires

Extent of Processing:   ICPSR data undergo a confidentiality review and are altered when necessary to limit the risk of disclosure. ICPSR also routinely creates ready-to-go data files along with setups in the major statistical software formats as well as standard codebooks to accompany the data. In addition to these procedures, ICPSR performed the following processing steps for this data collection:

  • Standardized missing values.

Restrictions: In preparing the data tape(s) for this collection, the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) has removed direct identifiers and characteristics that might lead to identification of data subjects. As an additional precaution, NCHS requires, under section 308(d) of the Public Health Service Act (42 U.S.C. 242m), that data collected by NCHS not be used for any purpose other than statistical analysis and reporting. NCHS further requires that analysts not use the data to learn the identity of any persons or establishments and that the director of NCHS be notified if any identities are inadvertently discovered. ICPSR member institutions and other users ordering data from ICPSR are expected to adhere to these restrictions.


Original ICPSR Release:   1993-02-11

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