Alcohol Expectancies and the Risk for Alcoholism

Laura McLaughlin Mann, Laurie Chassin, Kenneth J. Sher

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

166 Scopus citations


The current study examined alcohol expectancies and drinking motives as correlates of alcohol involvement among adolescents at high and low risk for future alcoholism. Measures of alcohol expectancies, drinking motives, presumed personality risk for alcoholism, family history of alcoholism, and alcohol involvement were completed by 979 high school students. Alcohol expectancies and drinking motives were found to vary as a function of risk status. More important, the strength of the relations between alcohol expectancies or drinking motives and alcohol involvement varied as a function of risk status. Expectancies of altered social behavior were particularly associated with low-risk drinking. Expectancies of enhanced cognitive and motor functioning, expectancies of tension reduction, expectancies of deteriorated cognitive and behavioral functioning, personal motives, and power motives were particularly associated with high-risk drinking. These expectancies and motives are of potential prognostic significance in the development of alcoholism and may be important targets for modification in primary prevention programs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)411-417
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of consulting and clinical psychology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 1987

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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