AuthorBergan, John Robert.
Committee ChairKahn, Marvin W.
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractCurrent literature suggests that the expectations that one holds for the effects of alcohol, referred to as "expectancies", exert a significant influence on decisions to drink. Expectancies have consistently been found to predict drinking behavior for a number of different groups. Data further suggests that expectancies begin to form prior to first hand experience with alcohol. The present study addressed the following four hypotheses: (1) A two factor model in which expectancies are grouped according to whether they represent positive or negative consequences of drinking will provide a good fit to expectancy data. In a recent study, Leigh and Stacy (in press) have generated a two factor model with several distinct indicators for each factors that warrants further investigation with a confirmatory approach. (2) Expectancy dimensions concerning beliefs about alcohol's impact on one's abilities will be associated, as will those concerned with expectations that drinking will impact physical and affective states. (3) The interaction between expectancies and desirability will predict drinking behavior. (4) Skill-related expectancy dimensions, in particular those associated with social abilities, will be more directly related to self-reported drinking than will physical and affective expectancies. This hypothesis will be examined under a model assessing the effects of expectancies on drinking. In order to evaluate these hypotheses, expectancy data were gathered from a sample of 1,585 Navy personnel using a recently developed expectancy instrument. Information about perception of the desirability of different potential outcomes were also gathered. The data were then analyzed using a structural equation modeling to empirically evaluate the hypotheses. The final models that were obtained suggested that expectancy and desirability were separate, but related constructs. Findings further indicated that the anticipated outcomes from drinking could be grouped into those concerning anticipated disinhibition and those concerning expected shame or embarrassment. The structural models that were obtained for the interaction between drinking and expectancy dimensions suggest that targeting expectations of disinhibition may be the most effective area of focus for prevention programs.