Self-Generated Drug Outcomes in High-Risk Adolescents

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The perceived outcomes of drug use were studied in a sampleof high-risk adolescents. Participants' self-generated responsesprovided the actual words they used to describe drug outcomes aswell as associative frequency norms valuable for future research. The authors also compared outcomes in terms of class of outcome (positive vs. negative) and class of drug (alcohol, marijuana, cigarettes, cocaine, speed, and LSD). Although the studied drugshave divergent pharmacological effects, participants self-generatedsome of the same outcomes (e.g., relaxation) across some of thedrugs. In addition, outcomes self-generated as positive outcomeswere very rarely also self-generated as negative outcomes. Finally, regressions revealed that self-generated responses were notpredictedby ethnicity, gender, or previous drug use. Many drug useoutcomes thus appeared to be available in memory regardless ofprevious drug use or other characteristics.

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