Alcohol expectancies and social deficits relating to problem drinking among college students

Beth A. Lewis, H. Katherine O'Neill

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

95 Scopus citations


Standardized questionnaires were administered to 116 male and female undergraduates to examine how social deficits and alcohol expectancies relate to alcohol use. Participants were classified as either problem or nonproblem drinkers based on the Rutgers Collegiate Substance Abuse Screening Test. Problem drinkers reported experiencing social anxiety, shyness, and lower self-esteem to a greater extent than nonproblem drinkers. Problem drinkers also held more positive alcohol expectancies than nonproblem drinkers. Contrary to our hypotheses, however, particular types of alcohol expectancies did not interact with specific areas of social functioning to influence problem drinking. Overall, these findings suggest that problem drinkers have positive expectations about the immediate effects of alcohol consumption even though drinking is linked to long-term impairment in social functioning. Copyright (C) 2000 Elsevier Science Ltd.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)295-299
Number of pages5
JournalAddictive Behaviors
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 2000

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors are grateful to D. Kimberly Strandberg and Michael Bussman for assistance with this project. This research was partially supported by North Dakota State University, Department of Psychology.

Copyright 2007 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.


  • Alcohol expectancies
  • Problem drinking
  • Social deficits


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