Objectives: We examined the prevalence and dynamics of binge drinking among middle school students.
Methods: We analyzed data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health. The sample was composed of approximately 5300 seventh-and eighth-grade students who were interviewed at 2 points in time.
Results: Approximately 8% of seventh graders and 17% of eighth graders reported engaging in binge drinking during the past 12 months. These rates varied as a function of school characteristics. Low scores on the parenting variables-communication quality, use of reasoning, and control and supervision-and binge drinking during middle school also were predictive of binge drinking during high school.
Conclusions: Binge drinking among middle school students is an important phenomenon that for many students forecasts future binge drinking during high school.