Attitude toward, knowledge and use of the “sensible drinking” message and unit-based guidelines in University students: a mixed-methods approach

Furtwängler, Nina (2016) Attitude toward, knowledge and use of the “sensible drinking” message and unit-based guidelines in University students: a mixed-methods approach. Doctoral thesis (PhD), University of Sussex.

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This thesis present three studies that aim to investigate and compare different definitions
of standard drinks and alcohol intake recommendations worldwide and explore
University students’ knowledge of, attitudes toward, and use of unit-based guidelines in
the UK. Excessive alcohol consumption is associated with a range of economic, social
and health problems. Heavy drinking patterns among University students are well
documented. Like most developed countries, the UK government introduced the
“sensible drinking” message and guidelines for alcohol consumption to encourage
people to reduce their drinking.
The first study was a review of official definitions of standard drinks and guidelines
of 57 countries. Analyses showed a lack of international consensus in terms of the size
of “standard drinks” or recommended daily or weekly maximum alcohol intake. The
results suggested that a global system of units and low risk drinking guidelines could
help people make better-informed choices about alcohol consumption and help
consistency among researchers, health professionals and governments developing public
health initiatives.
The second study used an online survey to examine the multivariate correlates of
motivation to use guidelines and accuracy of estimates of alcohol consumption among
640 students aged 18-37. Results showed that motivation and ability to accurately
estimate the unit content of beverages were linked to various cognitive and behavioural
variables such as conscientiousness and extraversion, familiarity with, and frequency of
use of the guidelines and perceptions of how easy and useful the unit-based guidelines
The third study employed semi-structured interviews in a sample of 12 students
selected from the second sample. Thematic analysis revealed that participants were not
motivated to adhere to the guidelines and lacked skills to apply them to manage their
own drinking. Findings suggest that multifaceted public health interventions should
include provision of information, efforts to motivate young people to change their
behaviour, and strategies to develop skills for managing alcohol consumption.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Schools and Departments: School of Psychology > Psychology
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare. Criminology > HV5001 Alcoholism. Intemperance. Temperance reform
L Education > LB Theory and practice of education > LB2300 Higher education
Depositing User: Library Cataloguing
Date Deposited: 05 Dec 2016 13:06
Last Modified: 05 Dec 2016 13:06

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