232317 Examining Alcohol Education Initiatives: A Correlational Case Study of Alcohol Use in NCAA Athletes

Monday, November 8, 2010

Amanda Tapler, MPH , Department of Health & Human Performance, Elon University, Elon, NC
Kristin Feeney, BS , Department of Health & Human Performance, Elon University, Elon, NC
Background: Significant literature suggests that collegiate athletes represent a subgroup with a high likelihood for at-risk drinking behaviors. It is, therefore, important to evaluate this group's exposure to education initiatives and its influence on behavioral outcomes. The purpose of this study was to investigate exposure to alcohol education initiatives and alcohol-related choices among NCAA athletes. Of interest is whether or not greater exposure to multiple alcohol education initiatives would increase healthier lifestyle choices and decrease high-risk behavior. Methods: During the first two weeks of April 2010, all NCAA athletes at a small, dynamic, and private Liberal Arts University were invited to complete a one-time survey examining alcohol education initiatives. Participants voluntarily answered a series of questions regarding exposure to initiatives and alcohol-related behavior choices. Results: 35% of athletes (n = 117; 61 female, 56 male) responded to the survey. 90.7% of respondents (n = 98) had consumed at least one alcoholic beverage in their life. On average, respondents drank one day in the past week (n = 42) and averaged drinking 3-5 days in the previous 30 days (n = 33). In addition, respondents were asked to indicate exposure to 15 possible initiatives. Data suggests that, within this subgroup, exposure to some forms of alcohol education were more prevalent than others; alcohol speakers (n = 64), contemporary wellness courses (n = 57), and peer education campaigns (n = 42). Conclusions: Findings suggest that exposure to alcohol education initiatives has the potential to influence behavior. Further research is needed to evaluate the trends in behavioral outcomes in collegiate athletes against a referent group of peers.

Learning Areas:
Assessment of individual and community needs for health education
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Public health or related research
Social and behavioral sciences
Systems thinking models (conceptual and theoretical models), applications related to public health

Learning Objectives:
1. Describe and identify the role of alcohol education exposure to behavioral outcomes. 2. Differentiate factors that influence the exposure-outcome relationship. 3. Discuss the optimal alcohol education initiative and its role on behavioral outcome.

Keywords: Alcohol Use, College Students

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am qualified to present because I am an uncompensated, self-motivated undergraduate researcher with previous coursework in epidemiology in public health practice and special populations.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.