2021 Undergraduate Research Showcase

Document Type

Student Presentation

Presentation Date


Faculty Sponsor

Megan L. Smith


Many studies endeavor to understand substance use in teens because it has been linked to both short and long term negative health outcomes. Research has linked both parent and peer factors to alcohol use, less is known about how these associations may play out across different developmental time periods. Our research question endeavors to fill that gap by investigating the patterns of relationships across middle school and high school students. Do the relationships between peer influence and parental influence on alcohol use differ across these two groups? Correlational analyses revealed significant relationships between alcohol and both parental monitoring (r = .215) and peer behavior (r = .412) were both significant at the p < .01 level. Two separate hierarchical multiple regression models were analyzed predicting alcohol use using gender, parental monitoring, and peer behaviors. Both the middle school (R2 =.157, F(4,4024)= 186.50, p < .01) and high school model (R2 =.155, F(4,4852)= 222.11, p < .01) were significant. Patterns of associations followed the same trends. For both middle and high school students, alcohol use, parental monitoring, and peer behavior were significantly correlated. For future studies within associations for substance use, peer influence and parental influence further research can be conducted regarding other substance abuse like cigarettes, pain medications and marijuana. This research study provides information aimed at assisting parents and providing them with the data to show how their restrictions and monitoring are correlated with their adolescents behavior.



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