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Monday, January 7, 2013

C-SIDE: Drinking Simulation for College Students

Our goals were to develop a realistic simulation of collegiate drinking contexts and evaluate the predictive validity of this methodology. 

After methods development, 88 incoming students (61% women) completed measures of alcohol consumption, alcohol expectancies and motives, and the Collegiate-Simulated Intoxication Digital Elicitation (C-SIDE). Eight months later, students reported recent drinking behavior and alcohol-related consequences. 

Willingness to drink alcohol on the C-SIDE predicted high-risk drinking at the end of the students' first year above and beyond baseline consumption. Accepting offers of food/nonalcoholic beverages across contexts predicted lower scores on the Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test 8 months later. Drinking game contexts elicited different levels of behavioral willingness; a game with explicit heckling elicited less drinking willingness than one in a smaller and more casual environment. 

These findings support the integration of social context into the assessment of alcohol-related decision making and the further development of strategies to understand context-dependent phenomena.

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