Developmental Approach to the Prevention of Adolescent Drinking and Smoking

The purpose of this project is to develop and validate research instruments needed to objectively assess the role of under-explored developmental processes in youth response to experimental alcohol and tobacco use and to prevention strategies. This project is based on a developmentally based risk and relationship framework that emphasizes the role of three broad types of psychosocial competencies--cognitive factors related to objective health risk appraisal; subjective perceptual factors related to the ways in which adolescents personalize risk information; and skill factors related to capacities to develop and maintain good peer relationships. Previous research has found these factors to be useful predictors of adolescent risk taking and to help explain the "personal meaning" of adolescent antisocial behavior and substance abuse. Two linked pilot projects will develop, refine and validate structured interviews and questionnaires needed for the systematic assessment of these factors in future research with adolescents--research that could provide new insights into determinants of youth alcohol and tobacco use and help guide the development of more powerful and developmentally appropriate interventions.

Grant Details

Amount Awarded $49,510.00

Awarded on: 10/22/1999

Time frame: 1/1/2000 - 8/31/2001

Grant Number: 35912


Harvard University

8 Garden Street
Cambridge, 02138-3630


Robert L. Selman
Project Director