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Evaluation of a Tobacco and Alcohol Abuse Prevention Curriculum for Adolescents

NCJ Number
W B Hansen; C K Malotte; J E Fielding
Date Published
32 pages
This study examines the effectiveness of a tobacco and alcohol prevention program delivered to 6th and 7th grade students in the Los Angeles metropolitan area by minimally trained classroom teachers.
Two cohorts of students were involved in the study. One group was tracked longitudinally for 4 years, the second for 3 years. A 102-item questionnaire was completed by students both before and after implementation of the curriculum. The questionnaire included demographic variables such as age, sex, race/ethnicity, and religion, and contained items that assessed cigarette and alcohol use during the 30 days prior to administration of the survey. The program focused on teaching students to identify and resist peer influences, information about short- and long-term effects of tobacco and alcohol use, correction of normative expectations, and establishment of conservative intentions regarding tobacco and alcohol use. Results indicate that the program reduced the onset and prevalence of tobacco use, but not alcohol use. The effects for tobacco were differentially related to school district in which the program was delivered, sex of student, and ethnicity. Results suggest that prevention program content is only one variable that may determine the effectiveness of prevention interventions. Tabular data and 42 references.