, Volume 30, Issue 1, pp 47-60
Date: 10 Jan 2013

Predicting Gambling Problems from Gambling Outcome Expectancies in College Student-Athletes

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Abstract

While previous research has suggested the potential importance of gambling outcome expectancies in determining gambling behaviour among adolescents, the predictive ability of gambling outcome expectancies has not yet been clearly delineated for college-aged youth. The current study aims to explore the relationships between gender and outcome expectancies in the prediction of gambling severity among college student-athletes. Data from the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) study assessing gambling behaviours and problems among U.S. college student-athletes were utilized. Complete data was available for 7,517 student-athletes. As expected, male college student-athletes reported more gambling participation as well as greater gambling problems than their female counterparts. Findings showed positive relationships between the outcome expectancies of financial gain, and negative emotional impacts and gambling problems. That is, those who endorsed more items on the outcome expectancy scales for financial gain and negative emotional impacts also tended to endorse more gambling-related problems. Findings also showed a negative relationship between outcome expectancies of fun and enjoyment, and gambling problems over and above the variance accounted for by gender. Those with gambling problems were less likely to have the expectation that gambling would be fun than those without gambling problems. Despite NCAA efforts to curb gambling activity, the results suggest that college student-athletes are at risk for over-involvement in gambling. Therefore, it is important to explore gambling outcome expectancies within this group since the motivations and reasons for gambling might be able to inform treatment initiatives.