An exploratory investigation of belongingness, college binge drinking, and academic functioning
Romosz, Ann Marie
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The present study explored the relationship between belongingness and college freshmen binge drinking. In addition, this investigation researched the relationship among college freshmen binge drinking and academic functioning. Data were collected from 67 incoming freshmen students on their sense of belongingness, current and past alcohol use, alcohol related negative consequences, and academic functioning. Data analysis consisted of calculating simple Pearson product moment correlations to examine significant relationships that exist between the considered variables. If significance was found, follow up regression analyses were performed. In addition, mediation analysis was conducted to determine if any mediating variables helped to explain the relationships between high school and college drinking and the negative consequences associated with alcohol consumption. Results indicated that belongingness and college drinking were not related variables, however specific items from the Need to Belong Scale did help to explain first semester college drinking. In addition, results from this investigation demonstrate that high school drinking behaviors are predictive of college drinking behaviors. Finally, relationships were found between alcohol consumption and negative consequences, specifically academic consequences among this sample. The information provided through this research begins to inform psychologists with a better understanding of the construct belongingness and its importance in academic settings. The findings of this investigation will also aid researchers in better understanding the nature of the system that drives heavy alcohol consumption for college freshmen. As a result of this understanding, educators may be able to implement effective interventions to reduce heavy alcohol consumption on college campuses.