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Title: Alcohol education for adolescents : an evaluation study
Author: Bagnall, Gellisse
Awarding Body: University of Edinburgh
Current Institution: University of Edinburgh
Date of Award: 1991
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The literature on alcohol education for young people suggests that few interventions have been effective in reducing misuse of alcohol amongst this population. However in a high proportion of such interventions there is an absence of any firm theoretical foundation and of systematic evaluation. This research therefore set out to conduct a controlled prospective study of the effectiveness of a school-based alcohol education programme for students aged 12 to 13 years. The theoretical basis of the proposed intervention is discussed in this thesis with reference to theories of substance use and models of health related behaviour. The research had three phases: (1) pre-intervention survey of alcohol-related knowledge, attitudes and behaviour; (2) development and teaching of a short alcohol education package and (3) post-intervention survey. Five experienced health/social education teachers were involved in the development of the alcohol education materials. Nine participating schools were selected from three regions of Britain - Highland in Scotland, Berkshire in England and Dyfed in Wales. The pre-intervention survey was completed by 1586 respondents, and the post-intervention survey by 1350 of the original study group. The findings from the pre-intervention survey reinforce those from other studies suggesting that the majority of 12 to 13 year olds have limited experience of alcohol, and that this is most likely to occur with parents in the family home. A small percentage, however, reported experience of negative consequences of alcohol consumption and intoxication. The main focus of the study, the evaluation of programme effectiveness, was assessed quantitatively in terms of the shift in alcohol-related knowledge, attitudes and behaviour reported pre- and post-intervention. The principal finding was that the young people exposed to the alcohol education showed a significantly greater increase in alcohol-related knowledge than did the controls. There were no statistically significant differences between control and intervention groups in either attitudes or behaviours. A consistent pattern however did emerge for alcohol-related behaviours, with controls more likely than the intervention group to have increased (a) the recency of their drinking (as indicated at the time of survey) (b) the quantities of beer and wine drunk on the last occasion and (c) the maximum quantity of alcohol drunk in one session. It may be concluded that the approach to alcohol education for young people adopted in this study had some impact on the target population in the intended direction. The implications of this outcome for future initiatives are discussed.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available