Culture, peer influence, cognition, and alcohol use among college students in China: Implications for future research and interventions Open Access

Sun, Li (2014)

Permanent URL: https://etd.library.emory.edu/concern/etds/9c67wn533?locale=en
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Abstract

Alcohol use among college students has become a significant health concern in many parts of the world. Unfortunately, little is known about this phenomenon in most developing countries. To address the emerging issue of college drinking in China, guided by the social ecological model and related theories, we conducted three studies to investigate the effects of culture, peer influence, and cognition on alcohol use among Chinese college students. Participants were 436 undergraduate students recruited from one college in China. A self-administered survey questionnaire was used to assess alcohol-related outcomes (alcohol use, heavy drinking, and alcohol-related problems) and associated psychosocial correlates. Study 1 focused on the interaction between culture and peer influence. Findings showed that Western cultural orientation moderated the effects of perceived best friend use and perceived average student use on alcohol use, and the directions of these two moderated effects were opposite. Perceived best friend use was revealed to partially mediate the effect of Western cultural orientation on alcohol use. Chinese cultural orientation, however, was not directly or indirectly associated with any alcohol-related outcomes. Study 2 investigated peer influence (i.e., perceived peer norms) on alcohol use. The results showed that participants did not perceive that peer referents consumed more alcohol, but perceived that more peers drank heavily than themselves. Perceived peer norms were positively related to alcohol-related outcomes, and self-other-discrepancy for alcohol use was negatively related to alcohol use. Both alcohol expectancies and drinking refusal self-efficacy were shown to partially mediate the effects of perceived peer norms on alcohol-related outcomes. Study 3 focused on three alcohol-related cognitive factors. Alcohol expectancies and drinking refusal self-efficacy were shown to be significantly related to alcohol-related outcomes, and drinking motives partially mediated these associations. Drinking refusal self-efficacy was not found to be a significant moderator of alcohol expectancies, however. Findings of these studies are largely consistent with previous research, providing support for the utility of related theories for studying college drinking in China. To address empirical questions suggested by these studies and inform interventions for Chinese college students, theory development and more research are needed.

Table of Contents

INTRODUCTION...1

LITERATURE REVIEW...3

STUDY 1. The influence of culture on alcohol use among Chinese college students

Introduction...41

Methods...45

Results...50

Discussion...52

References...59

Tables 1-4...71

Figure 1-2...75

STUDY 2. Perceived peer norms and alcohol use among Chinese college students

Introduction...77

Methods...80

Results...84

Discussion...85

References...91

Tables 1-6...99

STUDY 3. Cognitive factors and alcohol use among Chinese college students

Introduction...106

Methods...110

Results...112

Discussion...114

References...121

Tables 1-4...130

CONCLUSION...135

REFERENCES...141

Appendix: Survey questionnaire...183

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