Frequently Asked Questions
What HINTS Does
HINTS collects nationally representative data routinely about the American public's
use of cancer-related information. The survey:
- Provides updates on changing patterns, needs, and information opportunities in health
- Identifies changing communications trends and practices
- Assesses cancer information access and usage
- Provides information about how cancer risks are perceived
- Offers a testbed to researchers to test new theories in health
How HINTS Data Are Used
The HINTS data collection program was created to monitor changes in the rapidly
evolving field of health communication. Survey researchers are using the data to
understand how adults 18 years and older use different communication channels, including
the Internet, to obtain vital health information for themselves and their loved
ones. Program planners are using the data to overcome barriers to health information
usage across populations, and obtaining the data they need to create more effective
communication strategies. Finally, social scientists are using the data to refine
their theories of health communication in the information age and to offer new and
better recommendations for reducing the burden of cancer throughout the population.
Hints data are available for public use.
The following presentations were presented to researchers at the National Cancer
Institute. They are provided here as background to the survey and the analytic methodologies
appropriate for nationally weighted probability samples.
- HINTS Presentation to NCI Director, presented 12-18-2003 PDF (2.3 MB)
- Analyzing Weighted Survey Data, presented 2-9-2004 PDF (83 KB)
- Webinar: HINTS: Progress, Plans and Potentials, presented 6-27-2007
HINTS Users Meeting (January 9-10, 2014)
Sponsored by the National Cancer Institute (NCI), the meeting focused on research using HINTS data and the application of HINTS research to public health and clinical care.
HINTS was developed by the Health Communication and Informatics Research Branch (HCIRB)
of the Division
of Cancer Control and Population Sciences (DCCPS) as an outcome of the National
Cancer Institute's Extraordinary Opportunity in Cancer Communications. To learn
more about communication and informatics research at NCI, please visit the HCIRB and
For additional information about the HINTS program, please use our contact form or email NCIhints@mail.nih.gov.