College of Social Sciences and Public Affairs Poster Presentations


Effect of Parental Drug and Alcohol Use on Children in College

Document Type

Student Presentation

Presentation Date


Faculty Sponsor

Patt Elison-Bowers


Drug and alcohol abuse is a worldwide problem with significant impact in the United States. In 2009 an estimated twenty-four percent of the United States population has used illegal drugs (Johnson, O'Malley, Bachman, & Schulenberg, 2010). According to Boyd, Plemins, Schwartz, Johnson and Pickens (1999), the problem of drug and alcohol addiction lies in the home. Introductory psychology students between the ages of 18 and 54 participated in an eight question survey that was part of a larger omnibus survey to determine the effect that parents who used drugs and alcohol had on children in their family. Surveys were administered on the Boise State campus, yielding a viable sample of 144 participants. Parental use of drugs and alcohol significantly increase the chance that their children will use drugs and alcohol before the age of 18. There is a significant association between parental drug abuse and parental alcohol abuse. There is also a significant association between children who used drugs before they were 18 and children who used alcohol before they were 18. An association between parental drug and alcohol abuse and the use of drugs and alcohol before the age of 18 in their children is suggested.

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