Do Alcohol Expectancies Mediate Drinking Patterns of Adults?

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Alcohol Drinking Attitudes, Alcohol Drinking Patterns, Alcoholism, Expectations

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Compared the reinforcement expectancies of adult alcoholics with beliefs of 2 other adult populations. 171 participants (mean age 42.8 yrs) in alcohol treatment programs, 65 hospitalized medical patients (mean age 42.6 yrs), and 344 college students (mean age 24 yrs) identified their beliefs about the consequences of alcohol consumption through an alcohol expectancy questionnaire (AEQ). Results indicate that the previously defined AEQ beliefs among nonalcoholic populations identified by S. A. Brown et al (1980) and B. A. Christiansen et al (see record 1982-25609-001) are applicable to alcoholic populations. In the present study, nonalcoholics and alcoholics differed significantly in terms of their alcohol expectancies. In general, alcoholics were found to maintain strong alcohol expectancies, and expectancies increased across and within populations as a function of drinking patterns. Theoretical, research, and clinical implications of these findings and the AEQ are discussed.

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Citation / Publisher Attribution

Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, v. 53, issue 4, p. 512-519