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Biography

Julie A. Patock-Peckham was the recipient of a 3 year Individual National Research Service Award regarding dampening models of alcohol use. She earned her Ph.D. in 2005 from Arizona State University in Applied Social Psychology. She has 22 publications and currently serves on the editorial board of Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs.

Abstract

Deviance proneness theory suggests individuals with greater levels of behavioral under-control (i.e. impulsiveness, emotionality, etc.) ought to be at greater risk for developing alcohol-related problems. Negative urgency is a dimension of impulsiveness denoting a disposition to rash actions in a general sense. Impaired control reflects an inability to stop drinking even when continuing to drink runs counter to prior plans. This study sought to determine if a combination of behavioral under-control variables (i.e. negative urgency and impaired control) would have a moderating effect on key alcohol-related variables such as pathological reasons for drinking (i.e. using alcohol to dampen stress or drinking to cope with life), heavy episodic drinking (i.e. 5 or more drinks for men or 4 or more drinks for women at a time), and alcohol related problems among emerging adults. Multiple group structural equation modeling (SEM) was used to explore a model consisting of 678 college students (340 women; 338 men). Tests of structural invariance showed the model was moderated by gender. Results revealed 3 way interactions of negative urgency by impaired control by gender for pathological reasons for drinking (predictive for women but not men) and alcohol-related problems (predictive for men but not women). This suggests that the moderating effects of negative urgency and impaired control play an important role in the prediction of key alcohol-related variables but that the pattern of these relationships is distinct for each gender. This work was part of a symposium regarding impaired control at Research Society on Alcoholism, San Francisco, June, 2012.