A Randomized Motivational Enhancement Prevention Group Reduces Drinking and Alcohol Consequences in First-Year College Women


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Abstract

Alcohol consumption among college students has become an increasing problem that requires attention from college administrators, staff, and researchers. Despite the physiological differences between men and women, college women are drinking at increasingly risky rates, placing them at increased risk for negative consequences. The current study tested a group motivational enhancement approach to the prevention of heavy drinking among 1st-year college women. Using a randomized design, the authors assigned participants either to a group that received a single-session motivational enhancement intervention to reduce risky drinking that focused partly on women's specific reasons for drinking (n = 126) or to an assessment-only control group (n = 94). Results indicated that, relative to the control group participants, intervention participants drank fewer drinks per week, drank fewer drinks at peak consumption events, and had fewer alcohol-related consequences over a 10-week follow-up. Further, the intervention, which targeted women's reasons for drinking, was more effective in reducing consumption for participants with high social and enhancement motivations for drinking.

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