Graduation Year


Document Type




Degree Name

Master of Arts (M.A.)

Degree Granting Department


Major Professor

Robert C. Schlauch, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Mark S. Goldman, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Sandra L. Schneider, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Edelyn Verona, Ph.D.


Ambivalence Model of Craving, craving, self-control exertion


Failure in self-control has long been identified as a risk factor for problematic alcohol use among college students, as individuals who are less equipped or less able to regulate their thoughts, emotions, and behaviors use alcohol more frequently and are at greater risk for binge drinking. Recent findings suggest self-control depletion and motivation interact to determine performance on subsequent tasks that require self-control. The purpose of the present study was to investigate the ways self-control exertion and desires to use alcohol (approach inclinations) and desires to avoid using alcohol (avoidance inclinations) impact subsequent alcohol use behavior. Using ecological momentary assessment, the interaction of self-control exertion and alcohol motivation in the prediction of alcohol use behaviors was assessed in a sample of college drinkers. Daily monitoring assessments contained brief measures of alcohol-related behaviors, alcohol motivation, and self-control exertion and were administered five times daily for fourteen days. Results indicated that although self-control exertion interacted with alcohol motivation to predict drinking (controlling for drinking history, affect, and day of week), the relationship was not in the expected direction; higher self-control exertion among those high on both approach and avoidance motivation was associated was fewer number of drinks at the next measurement occasion. Findings highlight the need for consideration of the unique effects of both alcohol use motivation and self-control demand in the prediction of alcohol consumption, and draw attention to the need for further investigation into the complex interplay of these processes in daily life.