Osberg et al. (2010) recently developed the College Life Alcohol Salience Scale (CLASS), which assesses the extent to which students identify with the college drinking culture. Using a prospective design, we explored the incremental and predictive validity of the new measure in a sample of 479 college freshmen. Scores obtained on the new measure at Time 1 demonstrated strong positive associations with concurrently assessed drinking patterns and alcohol consequences, as well as those collected at Time 2 1 month later. The college alcohol beliefs measured by the CLASS also explained significant additional variance in drinking and its consequences at Time 2 beyond that accounted for by gender, perceived descriptive and injunctive norms, and positive and negative alcohol expectancies. Moreover, CLASS scores predicted typical drinking levels and alcohol consequences at Time 2, even when baseline levels of these drinking indices were controlled. Potential future lines of research with the CLASS are discussed.
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