247444 Social identification with coworkers and the association between drinking norms and college student drinking

Monday, October 31, 2011

Jason D. Daniel, PhD , Social Sciences and Health Policy, Wake Forest University School of Medicine, Winston-Salem, NC
James E. Lange, PhD , AOD Initiatives-Student Health Services; Departments of Psychology and Social Work; Graduate School of Public Health, San Diego State University, San Diego, CA
Approximately 40% of U.S. college students work. Only a few studies have focused on how working and attending college affect health and risk behaviors, such as drinking. Therefore, this study attempts to test: (1) the effects of descriptive norms on working students overall drinking and (2) is that effect moderated by strength of identification with coworkers. The models were tested using structural equation modeling in AMOS. A sample of students at a large southwestern college were asked to complete a web-survey. Of the 821 students that completed the survey, 330 reported being employed. Of those 74 worked in hospitality. The sample was mostly female (70%) and 47% were white. The average age was 23.7(SD±6.4) and they worked an average of 22± (10.6) hours per week. The model fit was adequate. Drinking norms were associated with problem drinking (b=.040, p<.001). However, the interaction was not significant. A 2nd model was run comparing hospitality vs. other student workers. This model also fit well and the interaction was significant for other workers but not for hospitality workers. It appears that identification does moderate norms and drinking behaviors for non-hospitality workers. Many interventions on college campuses utilize norm campaigns to reduce drinking, the results here show that targeting relevant groups in these campaigns and that work groups should be considered when designing these programs. Further, examination of the elements within student worksite that influence both identification and drinking norms should be considered when targeting risky drinking for students and possibly young workers as well.

Learning Areas:
Public health or related research

Learning Objectives:
Describe how social identity contributes to the relationship between drinking norms a college student drinking Assess implications for future research and public health practice

Keywords: College Students, Alcohol

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am qualified to present this information as it is part of my dissertation
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.