Collateral Reports in the College Setting: A Meta-Analytic Integration
Article first published online: 6 MAR 2009
Copyright © 2009 by the Research Society on Alcoholism
Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research
Volume 33, Issue 5, pages 826–838, May 2009
How to Cite
Borsari, B. and Muellerleile, P. (2009), Collateral Reports in the College Setting: A Meta-Analytic Integration. Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research, 33: 826–838. doi: 10.1111/j.1530-0277.2009.00902.x
- Issue published online: 13 APR 2009
- Article first published online: 6 MAR 2009
- Received for publication August 9, 2007; accepted December 9, 2008.
Background: The majority of research examining college drinking utilizes self-report data, and collateral reports have been used to verify participants’ self-reported alcohol use.
Methods: This meta-analytic integration examined the correspondence of over 970 collateral and participant dyads in the college setting.
Results and Conclusions: Results indicated that there is little bias (mean difference) between collateral estimates of participant drinking and participant’s self-report. A cumulative meta-analysis revealed that this (null) effect was stable and unlikely to be altered by subsequent research or the existence of unpublished studies. Analysis of the agreement between collaterals and participant estimates (measured by intraclass correlation coefficients; ICCs) revealed moderate levels of agreement (mean ICC = 0.501). Examination of predictors of both bias and agreement in collateral and participant reports indicates a possible intentional and protective underreporting on the part of the collaterals. Ways to reduce this bias are discussed along with the value of using collaterals to verify participant self-report in the college setting.