Alcohol Use Among College Students as a Function of Their Typical Social Drinking Context

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This study investigated the relations among frequency of drinking in different social contexts; alcohol consumption, expectancies, and problems; and psychosocial characteristics among college students. Social drinking contexts were defined by the size and gender composition of social groups. Participants were 98 men and 98 women who endorsed current alcohol use. The results showed that typical social drinking contexts were associated with men's average daily number of drinks and frequency of drunkenness but were not associated with women's alcohol consumption. Controlling for alcohol expectancies and personality factors did not obscure significant social context effects for men's alcohol consumption or problems, supporting the importance of considering social context variables in studies of drinking. Future research with regard to alcohol education, intervention, and prevention strategies is discussed.

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