Living in a caring community may help curb teenage alcohol use, according to new research. For the study, researchers at Penn State evaluated how seven categories of risk and protective factors can predict teen alcohol use. Risk factors included antisocial attitudes, antisocial behaviors, association with antisocial peers, and family risk. Protective factors were positive community experiences, positive school experiences and family strengths.
A team led by Damon Jones, Ph.D., research assistant professor in the Prevention Research Center for the Promotion of Human Development, analyzed data collected from more than 200,000 students in 8th and 10th grades to predict which factors spurred alcohol use.
“We found that when you put all of the major risk and protective factors into the same predictive model, certain risk factors, such as antisocial peer risk, tended to be more highly predictive of alcohol use than other factors, like positive school experiences,” said Jones.
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