State invites Illinois schools to participate in youth survey

University of Illinois News Bureau

The Illinois Youth Survey is a biennial survey of eighth, 10th and 12th grade students in Illinois that provides important assessments of school climate issues and substance use across the state’s middle and high schools.

Public and private middle and high schools in Illinois are invited to participate in the 2022 Illinois Youth Survey, an online anonymous survey that assesses alcohol, drug and tobacco use among eighth, 10th and 12th grade students.

Administered by the Center for Prevention Research and Development at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, the IYS also collects information on school climate, safety and bullying, along with youths’ feelings about school, their family support and rules about alcohol use – all factors that can contribute to risky behaviors and impede learning.

“We really need high-quality data from this statewide, representative survey to know what students experienced this year when in-person instruction resumed in Illinois. There is so little hard data available,” said Douglas C. Smith, the director of CPRD and a professor of social work at the university.

The data enables schools, communities and the state to gauge the prevalence of substance use among their young people and develop targeted prevention initiatives. Results of prior surveys and sample school reports can be viewed online.

In addition to assessing school needs, the IYS provides a scientific estimate of health and behavior indicators for the state of Illinois based on a random sample of eighth, 10th and 12th grade students.

The local findings can be used by school administrators, prevention professionals and community groups to address substance use, evaluate student support services and track progress toward physical, social and mental health goals, Smith said.

Available in English and Spanish and in separate versions for eighth grade and high school students, the online survey takes about one class period to administer.

Individualized reports on each school’s results are available free of charge to principals at participating schools from early March to late May. By law, participation in the IYS is also tracked as part of the Illinois Report Card, the official source of information on the academic performance and environments of public schools and school districts across the state.

School administrators can register online or by phone with an IYS coordinator at 888-333-5612. Data collection/survey administration will begin Jan. 4.

More information on the IYS is available on the CPRD website or by calling the IYS team at 217-333-3231 or toll-free at 888-333-5612 or by email,