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Monday, August 6, 2012

Predicting Driving After Drinking Over Time Among College Students: The Emerging Role of Injunctive Normative Perceptions

Despite prevention efforts, driving after drinking (DAD) is a prevalent high-risk behavior among
college students and is a leading cause of death and injury. Examination of factors predicting future DAD behavior is necessary to develop efficacious targeted interventions to reduce this behavior among college students. The current study evaluated demographic, social cognitive, and behavioral predictors of DAD using longitudinal data.

Participants were 655 nonabstaining college students (67.2% female; 60.3% White; mean age = 19.3 years) who completed online surveys at two time points 12 months apart.

Results revealed that participants consistently overestimated their peers' approval (injunctive norms) of DAD. In a three-step hierarchical logistic regression model, injunctive norms, age, and past DAD behavior uniquely contributed to the prediction of this behavior 12 months later. Neither sex nor membership in a sorority or fraternity emerged as significant predictors.

The findings provide important new insights into the longitudinal predictors of DAD among college students and highlight the need for DAD interventions, particularly among older students.

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