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, 64 (5), 704-11

Alcohol-related Aggression and Drinking at Off-Campus Parties and Bars: A National Study of Current Drinkers in College

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Alcohol-related Aggression and Drinking at Off-Campus Parties and Bars: A National Study of Current Drinkers in College

Thomas C Harford et al. J Stud Alcohol.

Abstract

Objective: This study examines relationships between alcohol-related aggression and drinking at off-campus parties and bars. Other background variables include gender, year in school, residence and heavy drinking in college.

Method: The study participants were respondents in the 1997 and 1999 Harvard School of Public Health College Alcohol Study, national surveys of students attending 119 4-year U.S. colleges. Based on responses from 8,426 students, 18-24 years of age, who were never married and who reported attendance at off-campus parties and bars in the past month, an exploratory factor analysis of the alcohol problem items was specified in a confirmatory factor analysis framework based on a two-factor solution (disruptive behavior and victims of altercations). In addition, the two factors were related to study variables.

Result: Among students attending both off-campus parties and bars, level of drinking was related to higher levels of Factor 1 (disruptive behaviors) at off-campus parties and bars. Level of drinking was related to higher levels of Factor 2 (victims of altercations) at off-campus bars but not off-campus parties. Factor 1 was higher among men, freshmen and residents in coed dorms and lower among students living off-campus with parents. Factor 2 was higher among women, freshmen compared with seniors and residents of Greek houses and lower among students living off-campus residence with parents.

Conclusions: Findings from this study highlight environmental factors in collegiate drinking practices and support targeted and diverse strategies for prevention activities.

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