A small survey study with a convenience sample of college students.
Objective: This study examined negative control (i.e., perceived lack of control over life outcomes) and need for control as predictors of alcohol-problem recognition, evaluations (good/bad), and expectancies (likely/unlikely) among college students. The study also explored the interaction between the need for control and alcohol consumption in alcohol related outcomes. Participants: Participants were a convenience sample of 500 college students from a rural Midwest university. Data was collected during the 2009–2010 academic year. Methods: Participants completed a survey assessing control and alcohol problem recognition, evaluations, and expectancies. Results: Negative control demonstrated a significant positive association with alcohol-problem recognition, evaluations, and expectancies after controlling for gender and alcohol consumption. Need for control did not have a main effect. However, the interaction was significant in that the association between need for control and negative evaluation of alcohol problems was strongest among participants with the highest levels of alcohol consumption. Conclusions: These results demonstrate that individual differences in sense of control are associated with alcohol-problem recognition, evaluation, and expectancies in young adults.