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Keywords:

  • acculturation;
  • alcohol expectancies;
  • alcohol-related problems;
  • hazardous alcohol use;
  • Hispanic college students

Objectives

The present study used a cultural and social cognitive conceptual framework to investigate whether alcohol expectancies and valuations would mediate the associations between specific acculturation orientations and alcohol-related risk behaviors.

Design

The sample comprised 1,527 Hispanic students attending colleges and universities in diverse regions of the United States. Respondents completed self-report measures of Hispanic and American cultural practices; alcohol expectancies and valuations; and self-reported frequency of hazardous alcohol use, binge drinking, sexual activity under the influence of alcohol, driving under the influence of alcohol, and riding with a drunk driver. Latent class analysis was used to classify participants into acculturation orientations.

Results

Results indicated that acculturation orientations were differentially associated with alcohol-related risk outcomes, with separated bicultural and low bicultural orientations inversely related to all of the alcohol-related risk behaviors except for riding with a drunk driver. Negative expectancy valuations were positively associated with endorsement of binge drinking and drunk driving and negative expectancies were negatively associated with binge drinking, drunk driving, and riding with a drunk driver. With the exception of sexual activity under the influence of alcohol, the associations between acculturation orientations and alcohol-related risk behaviors were partially mediated by positive alcohol expectancies.

Conclusions

Our findings provided relevant data that are informative for preventing alcohol and related risk behaviors among Hispanic college students.