The Association Between School Tobacco Control Policies and Youth Smoking Behavior

Jayani Jayawardhana, Haley E. Bolton, Monica Gaughan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Background: While U.S. tobacco control policy has focused mainly on tobacco excise taxes, product advertising bans, and state tobacco control policies such as indoor/outdoor smoking bans, little attention has been paid to school tobacco control policies and their impact on youth smoking behavior. Thus, the objective of this study is to examine the impact of school tobacco control policies on smoking behavior among teenagers and young adults in the USA. Methods: Using logistic regression approach, this study examines the effect of school tobacco control policies on individuals ever trying smoking and ever being a regular smoker using data from waves I, II, and III of the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health. Results: Findings indicate that school tobacco control policies targeting both students and employees of the school are associated with a reduced odds of smoking initiation among youth, but do not have much effect on youth becoming regular smokers. Conclusions: If implemented properly, school tobacco control policies could play a vital role in preventing youth smoking and help reduce youth smoking rates in the country, addressing a key public health issue.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)658-664
Number of pages7
JournalInternational Journal of Behavioral Medicine
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 1 2019


  • School smoking policies
  • Smoking cessation
  • Tobacco control
  • Youth smoking

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Applied Psychology


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