Problem Behavior Theory and Adolescent Alcohol Use

Published in: Addictive Behaviors, v. 12, no. 2, 1987, p. 189-193

Posted on RAND.org on December 31, 1986

by Ron D. Hays, Alan W. Stacy, M. Robin DiMatteo

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The prevalence of adolescent alcohol use has prompted interest in identifying the factors associated with its use. A comprehensive theory that provides a framework for understanding alcohol use is Jessor and Jessor's Problem Behavior Theory (PBT). The authors adopted PBT in a study of alcohol use among 226 Catholic high school students. PBT explained 38% of the variation in quantity-frequency of alcohol use and 31% of the variation in problem drinking. The three major systems (personality, perceived environment, behavioral) of the theory were about equally predictive of alcohol use.

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