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SurveyMonkey poll: teens’ opinions on gun control

SurveyMonkey poll: teens’ opinions on gun control

In the weeks immediately following the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, teens across the country have expressed their outrage, provoking widespread speculation that the national debate over guns might be changing. With a new SurveyMonkey national poll of 20,975 adults and 773 teens, we are able to put numbers to those frustrations and expectations.

Key findings

  • More than a third of teens (34%) say they “worry a lot” about being the victim of a mass shooting, more than twice the proportion of adults (16%) who say so.
  • While adults prioritize federal action on mental health over gun control (57% to 41%), teens are much more evenly split, with about half favoring gun control (49%) and the other half mental health (48%).
  • Big majorities of both teens and adults support raising the age to 21 to legally purchase an AR-15 style rifle; most also say a federal ban on assault weapons would make the country safer. More than three-quarters of teens (76%) and adults (78%) support setting a national minimum age of 21 to be able to purchase an AR-15 style rifle. More than two-thirds of teens (68%) and adults (66%) say a federal ban on assault-style weapons would make the U.S. a safer place.


This SurveyMonkey online poll was conducted February 26 - March 5, 2018 among a national sample of 20,975 adults and 733 teens. Respondents for this survey were selected from the nearly 3 million people who take surveys on the SurveyMonkey platform each day. More information on our sampling methodology can be found here.

Data from adult respondents have been weighted for age, race, sex, education, and geography using the Census Bureau’s American Community Survey to reflect the demographic composition of the United States age 18 and over. Data from teen respondents have been weighted by age (grouping 13-14 year-olds and 15-17 year-olds together), sex, race, and geography using the Census Bureau’s American Community Survey to reflect the demographic composition of teens in the United States.

The modeled error estimate for this survey is plus or minus 1 percentage point for those questions asked of adults and 4 percentage points for those questions asked of teens.

More SurveyMonkey polling on teens

December, 2017—”Common Sense and SurveyMonkey released the results of a survey of parents and teens on the subject of social media that finds a major disconnect between what parents feel they know about their kids’ online activities and how kids view their parents’ awareness of what they are actually doing. The "Social Media Disconnect" survey is the first in a new quarterly series of polls the two organizations will conduct of parents and kids about the most concerning technology challenges families are dealing with.”View the full press release here.