SSIREP Research Workshop: Hans Saint-Eloi Cadely (Assistant Professor, Department of Human Development and Family Science)

Discussant: Nicole Weiss, Assistant Professor, Department of Psychology; Clinical Psychology

The Influence of Pre-College Behaviors and Parenting Practices on Alcohol Use, Sexual Behaviors, and Adverse Outcomes Among First-Year College Women

  • Date: November 20, 2020
  • Time: 2:00 PM EST
  • Location: This event was on Zoom and has concluded.


By intertwining the life course perspective with problem-behavior theory, the present study examined the influence of pre-college experiences with alcohol and parent-adolescent relationships on emerging adults’ engagement in alcohol use, risky sexual behaviors (i.e., having sex without a condom and having multiple sex partners), and having experienced intimate partner violence (IPV) and/or sexual violence (SV) during their first semester of college. Participants were 229 college freshmen women between the ages of 18-21 years old (69.0% White, 4.4% Black, 16.6% Hispanic/Latino, 24.8% Asian/Pacific Islander, and 1.7% Mixed/More than one race). Results indicated that pre-college experiences with alcohol was related to binge drinking (having four drinks in a row) and regretful behaviors while drinking during women’s first semester of college. Students who reported being close to their mother were less likely to binge drink during their first semester of college. Parent-teen communication about avoiding dangerous situations and being safe decreased their kids’ likelihood of experiencing SV and doing something that they later regretted while under the influence of alcohol. Constant drinking the month prior to data collection and regretful behaviors under the influence of alcohol increased the likelihood of binge drinking, engaging in regretful behaviors under the influence of alcohol, and experiencing SV during women’s first semester of college. Lastly, being the first sibling to attend college reduced the likelihood of binge drinking during the first semester of college. These findings suggest that earlier experiences with alcohol and parental behaviors can shape college women’s experiences during college.