Web-based intervention to change perceived norms of college student alcohol use and sexual behavior on Spring Break



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Addictive Behaviors


The purpose of the present study was to evaluate an adapted web-based multi-component personalized feedback intervention to reduce college student alcohol use and risky sexual behavior during Spring Break. This is one of the first interventions focused on Spring Break alcohol use and related sexual behavior. Personalized feedback intervention components addressed intentions, expected consequences, norms, motivations, protective behavioral strategies, and pacts with friends. Participants were college students (N=263; 55% women) between the ages of 18 and 21 who planned to go on a Spring Break trip with their friends. Effects were not significant in reducing alcohol use or sexual behavior during Spring Break or some of the proposed intervention mechanisms. However, consistent results showed that the intervention succeeded in reducing perceived social norms for Spring Break drinking and sexual behavior. Findings suggest that changing norms alone is not sufficient for changing risk behavior during this event and alternative strategies are needed to impact other putative mediators.



Alcohol, Sexual behavior, Web-based intervention, College students, Spring break, Norms


Copyright 2014 Addictive Behaviors. This is a post-print version of a published paper that is available at: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0306460313004061. Recommended citation: Patrick, Megan E., Christine M. Lee, and Clayton Neighbors. "Web-based Intervention to Change Perceived Norms of College Student Alcohol Use and Sexual Behavior on Spring Break." Addictive Behaviors 39, no. 3 (2014): 600-606. doi: 10.1016/j.addbeh.2013.11.014. This item has been deposited in accordance with publisher copyright and licensing terms and with the author’s permission.