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The influence of peer affiliation and student activities on adolescent drug involvement.

Authors
Type
Published Article
Journal
Adolescence
Publication Date
Volume
31
Issue
122
Pages
297–306
Identifiers
PMID: 8726891
Source
Medline
License
Unknown

Abstract

This study examined the importance of students' academic performance level and extracurricular activities as predictors of drug involvement relative to peer influence. Social development theory provided the theoretical rational for the study. Data were obtained from 2,229 randomly selected students in the eighth, tenth, and twelfth grades from seventeen school districts in northeastern Ohio. At all three grade levels, involvement in extracurricular activities and academic level were significantly correlated with students' gateway and hard drug use. Consistent with prior research, the strongest correlate of gateway and hard drug use across all grade levels was affiliation with drug-using friends. Having a job after school was marginally related to self-reported gateway drug use at grade level ten. Multiple regression analysis revealed that extracurricular involvement and academic performance level make small, but unique contributions to the prediction of adolescents' gateway drug use beyond affiliation with drug-using peers at all three grade levels. The findings of this study suggest that students' academic performance and extracurricular involvements are significantly related to adolescent gateway and hard drug use, but have less predictive significance relative to peer relationships.

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