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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 157621 Find in a Library
Title: Sensation-Seeking and Delinquent Substance Use: An Extension of Learning Theory
Journal: Journal of Drug Issues  Volume:25  Issue:1  Dated:(Winter 1995)  Pages:173-193
Author(s): P B Wood; J K Cochran; B Pfefferbaum; B J Arneklev
Date Published: 1995
Page Count: 21
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This study involved an explicit test of a sensation-seeking perspective to help account for substance use (legal and illegal) among a sample of nearly 1,600 high school students responding to a survey conducted in 1991.
Abstract: The authors present analyses specific to drinking alcohol, getting drunk, tobacco use, use of marijuana or hashish, and use of harder drugs to determine if factors common to a sensation- seeking perspective help explain both the prevalence and frequency of substance use among adolescents. Findings provide strong support for considering sensation-seeking variables such as thrill-seeking, immediate gratification, and impulsivity to help explain self-reported substance use. Results show that for each of the five substance delinquencies examined, sensation- seeking factors generate statistically significant influences. Results point toward intrinsic rewards that initially promote and subsequently reinforce substance use; these perceived rewards include fun, thrills, the physiological "high" generated by drug or alcohol use, and the excitement of doing something illegal. The relevance of a sensation-seeking approach to social learning theory is explored. 4 tables and 34 references
Main Term(s): Juvenile drug use
Index Term(s): Juvenile delinquency factors; Tobacco use; Underage Drinking
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