The current application is a final revision of a competing renewal application previously reviewed in March, 2010, which seeks to continue a productive program of research designed to reduce alcohol use and related consequences among college students, using brief computerized feedback to reduce misperceptions of drinking norms (R01 AA012547). Three studies are proposed to evaluate and extend our understanding of social influence based alcohol interventions from the perspective of Social Identity Theory. College students are at increased risk for alcohol misuse compared to other adults, and development of efficacious intervention approaches is an urgent priority. Over the past several years empirical evidence has demonstrated: 1) perceptions of other students'behavior and attitudes about drinking are strongly associated with drinking;2) students consistently overestimate the prevalence and approval of drinking among their peers;and 3) reducing normative misperceptions can be an effective strategy for reducing drinking. Personalized normative feedback (PNF) is an individualized intervention whereby participants are given feedback regarding their own drinking, their perceptions of other students'drinking, and other students'actual drinking. Findings from our first grant (detailed in the Progress Report) indicate that repeatedly administered gender-specific PNF provided over the Internet was associated with reduced drinking over a two-year follow-up period. The proposed renewal seeks to incorporate relevant theoretical perspectives (e.g., Social Identity Theory (SIT);Deviance Regulation Theory (DRT)) that should advance our understanding of why and for whom these approaches work best. The overarching goal of the proposed research is to improve our understanding of why, for whom, and under what conditions PNF is most efficacious. Following a norms documentation survey at the University of Houston (UH), three studies are proposed to evaluate theoretically and practically innovative critical questions regarding PNF in the context of SIT. We are specifically interested in SIT as it relates to PNF and how differences in students'identity with respect to their University and college peers may impact the efficacy of PNF on alcohol consumption. Study 1 will examine how differences in social identity operate on three diverse campuses: the UH, the University of Washington, and Loyola Marymount University. Study 2 will evaluate hypotheses derived from DRT in the context of PNF and examine the influence of social identity on deviance regulation processes. Finally, in Study 3, social identity will be evaluated as a potential moderator of change by evaluating PNF, based on injunctive norms, delivered in person by computer versus an intervention provider using a motivational interviewing style. This research is expected to yield theoretical and practical improvements to norms based intervention strategies that have the potential to reduce drinking and related negative consequences.

Public Health Relevance

Excessive alcohol consumption among college students continues to be a serious public health concern associated with a wide range of negative consequences. Brief social norms based interventions have shown consistent effects in reducing problematic drinking in this population, but less research has evaluated theories underlying why, for whom, and under what conditions these interventions may be most efficacious.
This research aims to reduce problem drinking among college students and to improve social influence based interventions.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA)
Research Project (R01)
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Community Influences on Health Behavior (CIHB)
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Scott, Marcia S
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University of Houston
Schools of Arts and Sciences
United States
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DiBello, Angelo M; Miller, Mary Beth; Young, Chelsie M et al. (2018) Explicit drinking identity and alcohol problems: The mediating role of drinking to cope. Addict Behav 76:88-94
Young, Chelsie M; Pedersen, Eric R; Pearson, Andrew D et al. (2018) Drinking to cope moderates the efficacy of changing veteran drinking norms as a strategy for reducing drinking and alcohol-related problems among U.S. veterans. Psychol Addict Behav 32:213-223
Tomkins, Mary M; Neighbors, Clayton; Steers, Mai-Ly N (2018) Contrasting the Effects of Harmonious and Obsessive Passion for Religion on Stress and Drinking: Give me that Old Time Religion … and a Beer. Alcohol :
DiBello, Angelo M; Miller, Mary Beth; Neighbors, Clayton et al. (2018) The relative strength of attitudes versus perceived drinking norms as predictors of alcohol use. Addict Behav 80:39-46
DiBello, Angelo M; Preddy, Teresa M; Øverup, Camilla S et al. (2017) Understanding the Context of Romantic Partner Relational Victimization: Links between Relationship Satisfaction, Depressive Symptoms, and Alcohol-Related Problems. Psychol Violence 7:543-552
Krieger, Heather; Serrano, Surizaday; Neighbors, Clayton (2017) The Role of Self-Efficacy for Bystander Helping Behaviors in Risky Alcohol Situations. J Coll Stud Dev 58:451-456
Montes, Kevin S; Blanco, Lyzette; LaBrie, Joseph W (2017) The Relationship Between Perceived Hookup Attitudes and Negative Hookup Consequences: Do Perceived Attitudes of Close Friends Matter? J Sex Res 54:1128-1140
Lewis, Melissa A; Litt, Dana M; Tomkins, Mary et al. (2017) Prototype Willingness Model Drinking Cognitions Mediate Personalized Normative Feedback Efficacy. Prev Sci 18:373-381
Anthenien, Amber M; Lembo, Jordanna; Neighbors, Clayton (2017) Drinking motives and alcohol outcome expectancies as mediators of the association between negative urgency and alcohol consumption. Addict Behav 66:101-107
Krieger, Heather; DiBello, Angelo M; Neighbors, Clayton (2017) An introduction to body vandalism: What is it? Who does it? When does it happen? Addict Behav 64:89-92

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