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Heavy episodic drinking and alcohol consumption in French colleges: the role of perceived social norms.
Alcohol Clin Exp Res 2010; 34(1):164-74AC

Abstract

BACKGROUND

The effect of normative perceptions (social norms) on heavy episodic drinking (HED) behavior is well known in the U.S. college setting, but little work is available in other cultural contexts. The objective of this study is therefore to assess whether social norms of alcohol use are related to HED in France, taking account of other influential predictors.

METHODS

A cross-sectional survey was carried out among 731 second-year university students in the Paris region to explore the role of 29 potential alcohol use risk factors. The probability of heavy episodic drinking and the frequency of HED among heavy episodic drinkers were modeled independently. Monthly alcohol consumption was also assessed.

RESULTS

Of the students, 56% overestimate peer student prevalence of HED (37% for alcohol drinking prevalence). HED frequency rises with perceived peer student prevalence of HED. Other social norms associated with HED are perceived friends' approval of HED (increasing both HED probability and HED frequency) and perceived friend prevalence of alcohol drinking (increasing HED probability only). Cannabis and tobacco use, academic discipline, gender, and the number of friends are also identified as being associated with HED.

CONCLUSIONS

Overestimation of peer student prevalence is not uncommon among French university students. Furthermore, perceived peer student prevalence of HED is linked to HED frequency, even after adjusting for other correlates. Interventions correcting misperceived prevalences of HED among peer students have therefore the potential to reduce the frequency of HED in this population.

Authors+Show Affiliations

From the INSERM U669, Paris, France. leonel@worldonline.frNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info available

Pub Type(s)

Comparative Study
Journal Article
Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

Language

eng

PubMed ID

19860795

Citation

França, Lionel Riou, et al. "Heavy Episodic Drinking and Alcohol Consumption in French Colleges: the Role of Perceived Social Norms." Alcoholism, Clinical and Experimental Research, vol. 34, no. 1, 2010, pp. 164-74.
França LR, Dautzenberg B, Reynaud M. Heavy episodic drinking and alcohol consumption in French colleges: the role of perceived social norms. Alcohol Clin Exp Res. 2010;34(1):164-74.
França, L. R., Dautzenberg, B., & Reynaud, M. (2010). Heavy episodic drinking and alcohol consumption in French colleges: the role of perceived social norms. Alcoholism, Clinical and Experimental Research, 34(1), pp. 164-74. doi:10.1111/j.1530-0277.2009.01078.x.
França LR, Dautzenberg B, Reynaud M. Heavy Episodic Drinking and Alcohol Consumption in French Colleges: the Role of Perceived Social Norms. Alcohol Clin Exp Res. 2010;34(1):164-74. PubMed PMID: 19860795.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Heavy episodic drinking and alcohol consumption in French colleges: the role of perceived social norms. AU - França,Lionel Riou, AU - Dautzenberg,Bertrand, AU - Reynaud,Michel, Y1 - 2009/10/23/ PY - 2009/10/29/entrez PY - 2009/10/29/pubmed PY - 2010/8/11/medline SP - 164 EP - 74 JF - Alcoholism, clinical and experimental research JO - Alcohol. Clin. Exp. Res. VL - 34 IS - 1 N2 - BACKGROUND: The effect of normative perceptions (social norms) on heavy episodic drinking (HED) behavior is well known in the U.S. college setting, but little work is available in other cultural contexts. The objective of this study is therefore to assess whether social norms of alcohol use are related to HED in France, taking account of other influential predictors. METHODS: A cross-sectional survey was carried out among 731 second-year university students in the Paris region to explore the role of 29 potential alcohol use risk factors. The probability of heavy episodic drinking and the frequency of HED among heavy episodic drinkers were modeled independently. Monthly alcohol consumption was also assessed. RESULTS: Of the students, 56% overestimate peer student prevalence of HED (37% for alcohol drinking prevalence). HED frequency rises with perceived peer student prevalence of HED. Other social norms associated with HED are perceived friends' approval of HED (increasing both HED probability and HED frequency) and perceived friend prevalence of alcohol drinking (increasing HED probability only). Cannabis and tobacco use, academic discipline, gender, and the number of friends are also identified as being associated with HED. CONCLUSIONS: Overestimation of peer student prevalence is not uncommon among French university students. Furthermore, perceived peer student prevalence of HED is linked to HED frequency, even after adjusting for other correlates. Interventions correcting misperceived prevalences of HED among peer students have therefore the potential to reduce the frequency of HED in this population. SN - 1530-0277 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/19860795/Heavy_episodic_drinking_and_alcohol_consumption_in_French_colleges:_the_role_of_perceived_social_norms_ L2 - https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1530-0277.2009.01078.x DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -