ERIC Number: ED326795
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1990-Aug
Reference Count: N/A
Multidimensional Scaling for Measuring Alcohol Expectancies.
Rather, Bruce; And Others
Although expectancies for alcohol have been shown to influence drinking behavior, current expectancy questionnaires do not lend themselves to the study of how expectancies are represented in memory. Two studies were conducted which utilized multidimensional scaling techniques designed to produce hypothesized representations of cognitive structures. In one study, the cognitive representation of effects of alcohol were compared for college student drinkers (N=144). Heavy drinkers appeared to expect more social/positive and arousing effects than did light drinkers. These results suggest that positive and arousing effects of alcohol are strong associates for heavy drinkers, suggesting that this information may be rapidly retrieved and disproportionately influence decision making about drinking in heavy drinkers. In the other study, drinkers' (N=271) representations of the effects of alcohol were compared across situations. Expectancies involving effect and behavior appeared to be separate from other expectancies in the "dinner" situation whereas they appeared to be integrated with other expectancies in the "sexual" situation. These results suggest that situational differences in drinkers' cognitive structures can be studied via multidimensional scaling techniques using measures that are sensitive to contextual differences. Both studies yielded "cognitive maps" which suggest mechanisms by which decisions to drink are made. (ABL)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Convention of the American Psychological Association (98th, Boston, MA, August 10-14, 1990).