Do Positive Alcohol Expectancies Have a Critical Developmental Period in Pre-Adolescents?

Article


Copeland, Amy L, Proctor, Steven L, Terlecki, M., Kulesza, Magdalena and Williamson, Donald A 2015. Do Positive Alcohol Expectancies Have a Critical Developmental Period in Pre-Adolescents? Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs. 75 (6), pp. 945-952.
AuthorsCopeland, Amy L, Proctor, Steven L, Terlecki, M., Kulesza, Magdalena and Williamson, Donald A
Abstract

Objective: Positive outcome expectancies have been
shown to predict initiation of alcohol use in children and to mediate and
moderate the relationship between dispositional variables and drinking
behavior. Negative outcome expectancies for alcohol appear to weaken
as children progress to middle adolescence, but positive expectancies
tend to increase during this time. Positive alcohol expectancies have been
found to increase in children in third and fourth grades, indicating what
some investigators have termed a possible critical period for the development
of positive expectancies.
Method: In the present study, we assessed
alcohol expectancies at baseline, 6, 12, and 18 months in 277 secondthrough
sixth-grade students. Children completed the Alcohol Expectancy
Questionnaire–Adolescent. Univariate analyses of covariance were
conducted.
Results: There were signifi cant main effects for grade on
positive alcohol-expectancy change for Global Positive Transformations
at 12 and 18 months, Social Behavior Enhancement or Impediment at 6
and 12 months, and Relaxation/Tension Reduction at 6 and 18 months,
whereby a consistent pattern emerged in that lower grades did not differ
from each other, but they differed signifi cantly from the higher grades.

Conclusions: Data support a critical developmental period for positive
alcohol expectancies, with the greatest change observed between third
and fourth grade and between fourth and fi fth grade, and only in those
expectancies clearly describing positive outcomes (e.g., Relaxation/
Tension Reduction) via positive or negative reinforcement versus those
with either combined or ambiguous outcomes (e.g., Social Behavior Enhancement
or Impediment). (J. Stud. Alcohol Drugs, 75, 000–000, 2014)

JournalJournal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs
Journal citation75 (6), pp. 945-952
ISSN1938-4114
1937-1888
Year2015
PublisherAlcohol Research Documentation
Accepted author manuscript
License
CC BY
Web address (URL)http://dx.doi.org/10.15288/jsad.2014.75.945
Publication dates
Print21 Jan 2015
Publication process dates
Deposited20 Oct 2015
Accepted17 Jun 2014
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