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NCJ Number: 134149 Find in a Library
Title: Drunk Driving, Sensation Seeking, and Egocentrism Among Adolescents
Journal: Personality and Individual Differences  Volume:11  Issue:6  Dated:(1990)  Pages:541-546
Author(s): J Arnett
Date Published: 1990
Page Count: 6
Type: Survey
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This study tests hypotheses concerning the relationship between sensation seeking, egocentrism, and drunk driving among adolescent males.
Abstract: Zuckerman (1979) describes sensation seeking as a trait reflected in "the need for varied, novel, and complex sensations and experiences and the willingness to take physical and social risks for the sake of such experiences." "Adolescent egocentrism: is a term coined by Elkind (1967, 1985) to refer to the tendency among adolescents to distort reality according to their own wishes and fears. In this study, the subjects (all male) were 181 high school juniors and seniors in the Atlanta area (Georgia). Sensation seeking was measured with the Sensation Seeking Scale, Form V, developed by Zuckerman et al. (1978). Adolescent egocentrism was tested with four questions concerning probabilities related to drunk driving. Subjects also completed a questionnaire on drunk driving behavior. All subjects were asked to report their total SAT scores, and all were asked whether they knew anyone who had been injured or killed in an automobile accident that involved a drunk driver. Findings show that drunk driving was significantly related to the total score on the Sensation Seeking Scale and to the Thrill and Adventure Seeking, Disinhibition, and Boredom Susceptibility subscales. Regarding the relation between drunk driving and egocentrism, those who had driven while drunk were significantly less likely to expect that drunk driving would result in an accident or an arrest for drunk driving compared to boys who had not driven while drunk. They also estimated the percentage of their peers who had driven while drunk as higher compared to other boys. No relationship was found between drunk driving and knowledge of someone who had been killed or injured by a drunk driver. 4 tables and 30 references.
Main Term(s): Driving Under the Influence (DUI)
Index Term(s): Adolescent attitudes; Juvenile delinquency factors
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