Reactivity to alcohol assessment measures: an experimental test
Article first published online: 13 JUL 2009
© 2009 The Authors. Journal compilation © 2009 Society for the Study of Addiction
Volume 104, Issue 8, pages 1305–1310, August 2009
How to Cite
Walters, S. T., Vader, A. M., Harris, T. R. and Jouriles, E. N. (2009), Reactivity to alcohol assessment measures: an experimental test. Addiction, 104: 1305–1310. doi: 10.1111/j.1360-0443.2009.02632.x
- Issue published online: 13 JUL 2009
- Article first published online: 13 JUL 2009
- Submitted 24 November 2008; initial review completed 10 February 2009; final version accepted 25 March 2009
- brief interventions;
- college students
Aims Previous research has suggested that alcohol screening and assessment may affect drinking.
Design This study was a randomized test of reactivity to alcohol assessment questionnaires among a group of heavy drinking college students.
Setting and participants A total of 147 university students completed a screening questionnaire and were randomized to either immediate assessment or delayed assessment. The immediate assessment group completed a set of drinking questionnaires at baseline, 3, 6 and 12 months, while the delayed assessment group completed questionnaires only at 12 months.
Measurements Primary outcomes included overall volume of drinking, risky drinking and use of risk reduction behaviors.
Findings We found a significant effect of assessment on measures of risky drinking and risk reduction behaviors, but not on overall volume of drinking. Specifically, at 12 months, participants who had previously completed drinking assessments had a lower peak blood alcohol concentration (BAC) (d = −0.373), were more likely to report a low score on the Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test (AUDIT; odds ratio = 2.55) and tended to use more strategies to moderate their alcohol consumption (d = 0.352). Risk reduction behaviors that were affected tended to be those that limited alcohol consumption, rather than those that minimized consequences.
Conclusions These results may have implications for the development of brief interventions.