Journal of gambling behavior

, Volume 5, Issue 1, pp 66–83

Gambling in children and adolescents

  • Mark D. Griffiths

DOI: 10.1007/BF01022138

Cite this article as:
Griffiths, M.D. J Gambling Stud (1989) 5: 66. doi:10.1007/BF01022138


The topic of adolescent gambling is attracting growing interest, but there has still been little controlled or systematic research into the area, and much of what has been written would best be described as “armchair theorizing.” The literature concerning pre-adult gambling behavior falls into three general categories: (a) direct and indirect studies concerning adolescent gambling; (b) studies of the economic socialization of children, and (c) consideration of gambling as play and games as precursors to gambling. This paper presents an overview of the literature examining each of these three categories.

Special emphasis is placed upon the playing of fruit machines, as it is this activity which is currently regarded as the biggest problem concerning young gamblers, particularly in the U.K. Recommendations for future research are discussed, particularly for work using a functional/behavioral analysis model to determine the variables which influence how adolescents “learn” to gamble.

Copyright information

© Human Sciences Press, Inc. 1989

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mark D. Griffiths
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyUniversity of Exeter, Washington Singer LaboratoriesExeterEngland

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