The major objectives of the proposed Pathway to Independence Award are the acceleration and completion of Dr. Amelia Talley's training in alcohol-related research and the launching of her career as an independent scientist with a tenure-track assistant professor position. Dr. Talley is a psychologist and a postdoctoral fellow on an NIAAA T32 training grant at the University of Missouri (MU). The 2-year K99 Phase will complete Dr. Talley's training in the examination of patterns of alcohol use during emerging adulthood, with an emphasis on sexual minority populations and the associated motivational determinants of alcohol involvement. With supervision, Dr. Talley will: (c) complete adaptation of a measure of sexual self-concept conflict;(b) examine patterns and motivational determinates of alcohol use behaviors among women evidencing sexual self-concept conflict;(c) attend courses, workshops, and conferences related to alcohol use and misuse, qualitative and advanced quantitative data analysis, identity formation, and professional development issues;and (d) pilot all experimental procedures and materials. Dr. Talley will also dedicate a portion of her time to the dissemination of research findings through manuscript preparation and submission, consultation with experts on alcohol and sexual minority substance use, and preparation of materials for a national job search. The proposed mentor, Dr. Sher, and consultants, Drs. Wood, Steinley, Bartholow, Hughes &Diamond are experts in college drinking, longitudinal statistical modeling, multivariate statistical modeling, alcohol administration methodology, female sexual minority substance use, and female sexual identity development, respectively. MU is a world-class research institution, with the resources necessary to complete the aims of the K99. The 3-year ROO Phase will allow Dr. Talley to (a) conduct a series of experimental studies examining moderators of the relation between sexual self-concept conflict and alcohol consumption (b) establish her laboratory (c) continue preparation and dissemination of research findings, and (d) submit an R01 to NIAAA. This study extends Dr. Talley's research on sexual minority substance use behaviors to investigate (a) the role of sexual self-concept conflict in determining etiology and course of alcohol use behaviors among women and (b) explanatory variables that may account for alcohol use behaviors among women who report sexual self-concept conflict. Study findings will provide pilot data for Dr. Talley's R01 submission. The current aims are also in-line with NIAAA's (2005) expressed desire """"""""to further research with a broader representation of LGBT individuals"""""""" to """"""""improve services and outcomes in the prevention and treatment of alcohol abuse among LGBT individuals.""""""""

Public Health Relevance

Briefly, the proposed research project can help researchers and clinicians better understand how the process of sexual questioning may contribute to heightened alcohol involvement for women who acknowledge inconsistent or unstable beliefs about their own sexual orientation. This information can be used to design interventions to better address problem drinking among subgroups of women during emerging adulthood.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA)
Career Transition Award (K99)
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Health Services Research Review Subcommittee (AA)
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Freeman, Robert
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University of Missouri-Columbia
Schools of Arts and Sciences
United States
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Talley, Amelia E; Brown, Sarah L; Cukrowicz, Kelly et al. (2016) Sexual Self-Concept Ambiguity and the Interpersonal Theory of Suicide Risk. Suicide Life Threat Behav 46:127-40
Talley, Amelia E; Aranda, Frances; Hughes, Tonda L et al. (2015) Longitudinal Associations among Discordant Sexual Orientation Dimensions and Hazardous Drinking in a Cohort of Sexual Minority Women. J Health Soc Behav 56:225-45
Talley, Amelia E; Stevens, Jordan E (2015) Sexual Orientation Self-Concept Ambiguity: Scale Adaptation and Validation. Assessment :
Talley, Amelia E; Hughes, Tonda L; Aranda, Frances et al. (2014) Exploring alcohol-use behaviors among heterosexual and sexual minority adolescents: intersections with sex, age, and race/ethnicity. Am J Public Health 104:295-303
Baiocchi-Wagner, Elizabeth A; Talley, Amelia E (2013) The role of family communication in individual health attitudes and behaviors concerning diet and physical activity. Health Commun 28:193-205
Talley, Amelia E (2013) Recommendations for improving substance abuse treatment interventions for sexual minority substance abusers. Drug Alcohol Rev 32:539-40
Talley, Amelia E; Sher, Kenneth J; Steinley, Douglas et al. (2012) Patterns of alcohol use and consequences among empirically derived sexual minority subgroups. J Stud Alcohol Drugs 73:290-302
Littlefield, Andrew K; Talley, Amelia E; Jackson, Kristina M (2012) Coping motives, negative moods, and time-to-drink: exploring alternative analytic models of coping motives as a moderator of daily mood-drinking covariation. Addict Behav 37:1371-6
Talley, Amelia E; Tomko, Rachel L; Littlefield, Andrew K et al. (2011) The influence of general identity disturbance on reports of lifetime substance use disorders and related outcomes among sexual minority adults with a history of substance use. Psychol Addict Behav 25:530-41