The Youth Risk Behavior Survey (YRBS) is a statewide, school-based confidential survey of Florida’s public high school students. The purpose of the YRBS is to monitor priority health-risk behaviors that contribute substantially to the leading causes of death, disability, and social problems among youth, which contribute to patterns in adulthood. The first Florida YRBS was administered in 1991. Since 2001, the YRBS has been jointly administered in odd-numbered years by the Florida Departments of Health and Education. State data collection for the YRBS does not include county-level data. However, six Florida counties (Broward, Duval, Hillsborough, Miami-Dade, Orange, and Palm Beach) are or have been funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to collect county-level data. National, state, and county-level data (where available) can be found on the CDC’s YRBS website (YRBSS - Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System - DASH/HealthyYouth).
In 2001, the YRBS became part of the Florida Youth Survey (FYS), which includes the Florida Youth Tobacco Survey (FYTS), the Middle School Health Behavior Survey (MSHBS), and the Florida Youth Substance Abuse Survey (FYSAS). The YRBS has been supported by many agencies, including the Florida Departments of Education, Children and Families, and Juvenile Justice, school districts throughout the state, and the Division of Adolescent and School Health (DASH) at the CDC.
Topics on the YRBS
The following topics are asked in this survey: 1) Demographic information (age, gender, grade, race/ethnicity, weight, height); 2) Unintentional injuries and violence; 3) Tobacco use; 4) Alcohol and other drug use; 5) Sexual behaviors; 6) Dietary behaviors; and 7) Physical activity.
The YRBS is based on a two-stage cluster probability sample design. First, a random sample of public high schools is selected for participation in the survey. Second, within each selected school, a random sample of classrooms is selected, and all students in those classes are invited to participate in the survey. The responses of the survey participants are weighted to be representative of all Florida public high school students.
Florida public high school students (9-12 grade levels)
Since the YRBS is based on a two-stage cluster probability sampling methodology rather than a simple random sample, SUDAAN or advanced components of SAS or other statistical programs are recommended for the data analysis. Confidence interval is an important measure of statistical significance and very useful when making comparison between data.