Shootings and other violent acts continue to take place in schools across the nation. These horrific events have continued to increase in number and impact. In response, the Center for Homeland Defense and Security (CHDS) has developed a School Shooting Safety Compendium to aid officials and researchers on the topic.

Welcome to the Center for Homeland Defense and Security (CHDS)

School Shooting Safety Compendium

This compendium provides links to relevant data on and analysis of gun violence in American primary and secondary schools from reputable sources including the CHDS.  While no amount of scientific study can fully explain the tragedy of school shooting incidents, singly or as a phenomenon, we hope that this compilation of knowledge can contribute to solutions and ultimately to the security of our most precious institutions. These resources will be updated as necessary to reflect new or updated information. One can click on the speed links to the right or scroll down to access these resources on this page.

Specialized Databases

Databases with Subscription Access only


Bailey, Susan L., Robert L. Flewelling, and Dennis P. Rosenbaum. “Characteristics of Students Who Bring Weapons to School.” Journal of Adolescent Health 20, no. 4 (April 1997): 261–70.

Beland, Louis-Philippe, and Dongwoo Kim. “The Effect of High School Shootings on Schools and Student Performance.” Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis 38, no. 1 (March 2016): 113–26.

Borum, Randy, Dewey G. Cornell, William Modzeleski, and Shane R. Jimerson. “What Can Be Done about School Shootings?: A Review of the Evidence.” Educational Researcher 39, no. 1 (January 2010): 27–37.

Brank, Eve M., Jennifer L. Woolard, Veda E. Brown, Mark Fondacaro, Jennifer L. Luescher, Ramona G. Chinn, and Scott A. Miller. “Will They Tell? Weapons Reporting by Middle-School Youth.” Youth Violence and Juvenile Justice 5, no. 2 (2007): 125–46.

Burns, Ronald, and Charles Crawford. “School Shootings, the Media, and Public Fear: Ingredients for a Moral Panic.” Crime, Law and Social Change 32, no. 2 (1999): 147–68.

Burton, Alexander L., Justin T. Pickett, and Velmer S. Burton, Jr. “Public Support for Policies to Reduce School Shootings: A Moral-Altruistic Model.” Journal of Research in Crime and Delinquency 58, no. 3 (2020): 269–305.

Duplechain, Rosalind, and Robert Morris. “School Violence: Reported School Shootings and Making Schools Safer.” Education 135, no. 2 (Winter 2014): 145–50.

Flannery, Daniel J., William Modzeleski, and Jeff M. Kretschmar. “Violence and School Shootings.” Current Psychiatry Reports 15, no. 1 (2013): 331.

Fox, Cybelle, and David J. Harding. “School Shootings as Organizational Deviance.” Sociology of Education 78, no. 1 (January 2005): 69–97.

Furlong, Michael J., Michael P. Bates, and Douglas C. Smith. “Predicting School Weapon Possession: A Secondary Analysis of the Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance Survey.” Psychology in the Schools 38, no. 2 (March 2001): 127–39.

Harding, David J., Cybelle Fox, and Jal D. Mehta. “Studying Rare Events through Qualitative Case Studies: Lessons from a Study of Rampage School Shootings.” Sociological Methods & Resesarch 31, no. 2 (November 2002): 174–217.

Heilbrun, Kirk, Joel Dvoskin, and Anna Heilbrun. “Toward Preventing Future Tragedies: Mass Killings on College Campuses, Public Health, and Threat/Risk Assessment.” Psychological Injury and Law 2, no. 2 (June 2009): 93–99.

Hong, Jun Sung, Hyunkag Cho, Paula Allen-Meares, and Dorothy L. Espelage. “The Social Ecology of the Columbine High School Shootings.” Children and Youth Services Review 33, no. 6 (2011): 861–68.

Hsiang, Iris Chyi, and Maxwell McCombs. “Media Salience and the Process of Framing: Coverage of the Columbine School Shootings.” Journalism and Mass Communication Quarterly 81, no. 1 (Spring 2004): 22–35.

Jaymi Elsass, H., Jaclyn Schildkraut, and Mark C. Stafford. “Studying School Shootings: Challenges and Considerations for Research.” American Journal of Criminal Justice 41, no. 3 (2016): 444–64.

Jonson, Cheryl Lero. “Preventing School Shootings: The Effectiveness of Safety Measures.” Victims & Offenders 12, no. 6 (2017): 956–73.

Jonson, Cheryl Lero, Melissa M. Moon, and Joseph A. Hendry. “One Size Does Not Fit All: Traditional Lockdown versus Multioption Responses to School Shootings.” Journal of School Violence 19, no. 2 (2020): 154–66.

Kerres Malecki, Christine, and Michelle Kilpatrick Demaray. “Carrying a Weapon to School and Perceptions of Social Support in an Urban Middle School.” Journal of Emotional and Behavioral Disorders 11, no. 3 (2003): 169–78.

Kimmel, Michael S., and Matthew Mahler. “Adolescent Masculinity, Homophobia, and Violence: Random School Shootings, 1982-2001.” The American Behavioral Scientist 46, no. 10 (June 2003): 1439–58.

Leary, Mark R., Robin M. Kowalski, Laura Smith, and Stephen Phillips. “Teasing, Rejection, and Violence: Case Studies of the School Shootings.” Aggressive Behavior 29, no. 3 (June 2003): 202–14.

Lickel, Brian, Toni Schmader, and David L. Hamilton. “A Case of Collective Responsibility: Who Else Was to Blame for the Columbine High School Shootings?” Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin 29, no. 2 (February 2003): 194–204.

Livingston, Melvin D., Matthew E. Rossheim, and Kelli Stidham Hall. “A Descriptive Analysis of School and School Shooter Characteristics and the Severity of School Shootings in the United States, 1999–2018.” Journal of Adolescent Health 64, no. 6 (June 2019): 797–99.

Maguire, Brendan, Georgie Ann Weatherby, and Richard A Mathers. “Network News Coverage of School Shootings.” The Social Science Journal 39, no. 3 (2002): 465–70.

McGee, J., and C. DeBernardo. “The Classroom Avenger: A Behavioral Profile of School Based Shootings.” Forensic Examiner 8 (1999): 16–18.

Mears, Daniel P., Melissa M. Moon, and Angela J. Thielo. “Columbine Revisited: Myths and Realities about the Bullying–School Shootings Connection.” Victims & Offenders 12, no. 6 (2017): 939–55.

Muschert, Glenn W. “Research in School Shootings.” Sociology Compass 1, no. 1 (2007): 60–80.

Preti, Antonio. “School Shooting as a Culturally Enforced Way of Expressing Suicidal Hostile Intentions.” Journal of the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law 36, no. 4 (2008): 544–50.

Reeping, Paul M., Ariana N. Gobaud, Charles C. Branas, and Sonali Rajan. “K–12 School Shootings.” Pediatric Clinics of North America 68, no. 2 (April 2021): 413–26.

Rowhani-Rahbar, Ali, and Caitlin Moe. “School Shootings in the U.S.: What Is the State of Evidence?” Journal of Adolescent Health 64, no. 6 (June 2019): 683–84.

Schuster, Beth. “Preventing, Preparing for Critical Incidents in Schools.” NIJ Journal, no. 262 (March 2009): 42–46.

Teasley, Martell L. “School Shootings and the Need for More School-Based Mental Health Services.” Children & Schools 40, no. 3 (July 2018): 131–34.

Towers, Sherry, Andres Gomez-Lievano, Maryam Khan, Anuj Mubayi, and Carlos Castillo-Chavez. “Contagion in Mass Killings and School Shootings.” Edited by Joshua Yukich. PLOS ONE 10, no. 7 (2015): 1–12.

Warnick, Bryan R., Benjamin A. Johnson, and Samuel Rocha. “Tragedy and the Meaning of School Shootings.” Educational Theory 60, no. 3 (2010): 371–90.

Wike, Traci L., and Mark W. Fraser. “School Shootings: Making Sense of the Senseless.” Aggression and Violent Behavior 14, no. 3 (May-June 2009): 162–69.

Specialized Journals Focused on Schools

Journal Special Issues

Books and Reports

Agger, Ben, and Timothy W. Luke. There Is a Gunman on Campus: Tragedy and Terror at Virginia Tech. Lanham, MD: The Rowman & Littlefield Publishing Group, 2008.

Allely, Clare S. The Psychology of Extreme Violence: A Case Study Approach to Serial Homicide, Mass Shooting, School Shooting and Lone-Actor Terrorism. Milton, UK: Taylor and Francis, 2020.

Allison, Jeff, Mo Canady, and Frank G. Straub. School Resource Officers Averted School Violence: Special Report. Washington, DC: Office of Community Oriented Policing Services., 2020.

Böckler, Nils, Thorsten Seeger, Peter Sitzer, and Wilhelm Heitmeyer, eds. School Shootings: International Research, Case Studies, and Concepts for Prevention. New York: Springer, 2013.

Cabral, Marika, Bokyung Kim, Maya Rossin-Slater, Molly Schnell, and Hannes Schwandt. Trauma at School: The Impacts of Shootings on Students’ Human Capital and Economic Outcomes. Cambridge, MA: National Bureau of Economic Research, 2022.

Cornell, Dewey, and Peter Sheras. Guidelines for Responding to Student Threats of Violence. Longmont, CO: Sopris West, 2006.

Crews, Gordon A., ed. Handbook of Research on Mass Shootings and Multiple Victim Violence. Hershey, PA: IGI Global, 2019.

Fein, Robert A., Bryan Vossekuil, William S. Pollack, Randy Borum, William Modzeleski, and Marisa Reddy. Threat Assessment in Schools: A Guide to Managing Threatening Situations and to Creating Safe School Climates. Washington, DC: U.S. Secret Service and Department of Education, 2004.

Freilich, Joshua D., Steven M. Chermak, Nadine M. Connell, Brent R. Klein, and Emily A. Greene-Colozzi. Overview of The American School Shooting Study (TASSS). New York: Rockefeller Institute of Government, 2022.

Hemphill, Brian O., and Brandi Hephner LaBanc, eds. Enough Is Enough: A Student Affairs Perspective on Preparedness and Response to a Campus Shooting. Sterling, VA: Stylus Publishing, LLC, 2010.

Jimerson, Shane, Amanda Nickerson, Matthew J. Mayer, and Michael J. Furlong, eds. Handbook of School Violence and School Safety: From Research to Practice. 2nd ed. London: Routledge, 2011.

Kellner, Douglas. Guys and Guns Amok: Domestic Terrorism and School Shootings from the Oklahoma City Bombing to the Virginia Tech Massacre. New York: Routledge, 2015.

Kelly, Michael B., and Anne B. McBride. Safe Passage: A Guide for Addressing School Violence. Washington, DC: American Psychiatric Publishing, 2019.

Klein, Jessica. The Bully Society: School Shootings and the Crisis of Bullying in America’s Schools. New York: NYU Press, 2012.

Langman, Peter. Warning Signs: Identifying School Shooters before They Strike. Allentown, PA: Langman Psychological Associates, LLC, 2021.

———. Why Kids Kill: Inside the Minds of School Shooters. New York: Palgrave Macmillan., 2009.

Langman, Peter F. School Shooters: Understanding High School, College, and Adult Perpetrators. Lanham. MD: Rowman & Littlefield, 2015.

Madfis, Eric. How to Stop School Rampage Killing: Lessons from Averted Mass Shootings and Bombings. 2nd ed. Cham, Switzerland: Palgrave Macmillan, 2020.

McCluskey, Michael R. News Framing of School Shootings: Journalism and American Social Problems. Lanham, MD: Lexington Books, 2017.

Moore, Mark M., Carol V. Petrie, Anthony A. Braga, and Brenda L. McLaughlin, eds. Deadly Lessons: Understanding Lethal School Violence. Washington, DC: National Academies Press, 2003.

Muschert, Glenn, Stuart Henry, Nicole L. Bracy, and Anthony A. Peguero. Responding to School Violence: Confronting the Columbine Effect. Boulder, CO: Lynne Rienner Publishers, 2014.

National Threat Assessment Center. Protecting America’s Schools: A U.S. Secret Service Analysis of Targeted School Violence. Washington: US Secret Service, Department of Homeland Security, 2019.

Newman, Katherine S. Rampage: The Social Roots of School Shootings. New York: Basic Books, 2008.

Nowicki, Jacqueline M. K-12 Education: Characteristics of School Shootings. Washington, DC: Government Accountability Office, 2020.

O’Toole, Mary Ellen. The School Shooter: A Threat Assessment Perspective. Quantico, VA: National Center for the Analysis of Violent Crime, Federal Bureau of Investigation, n.d.

Poland, Scott, and Sara Ferguson. Lessons Learned from School Shootings: Perspectives from the United States of America. Cham, Switzerland: Springer, 2021.

Riedman, David, and Desmond S. O’Neill. K-12 School Shooting Database: Research Methodology. Monterey, CA: Naval Postgraduate School, Center for Homeland Defense and Security, 2018.

Rossin-Slater, Maya. Surviving a School Shooting: Impacts on the Mental Health, Education, and Earnings of American Youth. Stanford, CA: Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research, 2022.

Sood, Aradhana Bela, and Robert Cohen. The Virginia Tech Massacre: Strategies and Challenges for Improving Mental Health Policy on Campus and Beyond. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press, 2014.

Vossekuil, Bryan, Robert Fein, Marisa Reddy, Randy Borum, and William Modzeleski. The Final Report and Findings of the Safe School Initiative: Implications for the Prevention of School Attacks in the United States. Washington, DC: US Secret Service and US Department of Education, 2004.


Theses and Dissertations

Ausdemore, Steven E. “Eliminating the Lost Time Interval of Law Enforcement to Active Shooter Events in Schools.” Master’s thesis, Naval Postgraduate School, 2015.

Beaudwin, Jason, Rowell R. Domondon, Bradley M. Scott, Bhavin J. Shah, Kayur P. Shah, Christopher S. Sikes, and Cyprien N. Tchatchou. “A Systems Engineering Approach to School System Enhancements for Countering Active Shooters in U.S. K-12 Schools.” Systems Engineering capstone report, Naval Postgraduate School, 2018.

Berglund, Douglas A. “When the Shooting Stops: Recovery from Active-Shooter Events for K-12 Schools.” Master’s thesis, Naval Postgraduate School, 2017.

Donaghey, Michael J. “Protecting Our Future: Developing a National School Security Standard.” Naval Postgraduate School, 2013.

Hart, Melanie A. “Mass School Shootings: Predicting the Usage of Firearms in Acts of School Violence.” Master’s thesis, Southern Georgia University, 2014.

Kennedy, Dylan F. “The School Shooter: A Rapidly Growing Problem for Homeland Security.” Master’s thesis, Naval Postgraduate School, 2018.

Mongan, Philip C. “Rampage School Shootings: A Content Analysis of Media and Scholarly Accounts of Perpetration Factors Associated with the Phenomenon.” PhD diss., University of Kentucky, 2013.

Pegg, Hadley. “The Impact of School Shootings on American Students: A Research Paper and a Play.” Master’s thesis, Middle Tennessee State University, 2021.

Quintero, Sherrell L. “School Shootings: What’s the Plan?” Master’s thesis, Concordia University, Saint Paul, 2021.

Topadzhikyan, Tigran. “School Shootings: Law Enforcement and School District Networking.” Master’s thesis, Naval Postgraduate School, 2013.

Welch, Edward. “Preventing School Shootings: A Public Health Approach to Gun Violence.” Master’s thesis, Naval Postgraduate School, 2013.

Williams, Michael S. “Feeling Safe and Secure: Analysis of the Chico Police Department’s School Resource Program through the Teachers’ Experience.” Master’s thesis, Naval Postgraduate School, 2022.

Whitney, IV, John A. “Active Shooter Response: Defensive Tactics and Tactical Decision-Making for Elementary School Teachers and Staff.” Master’s thesis, Naval Postgraduate School, 2017.

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