Long-Term Follow-Up Effects of a School-Based Drug Abuse Prevention Program on Adolescent Risky Driving
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This study examined long-term follow-up data from a large-scale randomized trial to determine the extent to which participation in a school-based drug abuse prevention program during junior high school led to less risky driving among high school students. Self-report data collected from students in the 7th, 10th, and 12th grades were matched by name to students' department of motor vehicles (DMV) records at the end of high school. The DMV data included the total number of violations on students' driving records as well as the number of “points” that indicate the frequency and severity of the violations. A series of logistic regression analyses revealed that males were more likely to have violations and points on their driving records than females, and regular alcohol users were more likely to have violations and points than those who did not use alcohol regularly. Controlling for gender and alcohol use, students who received the drug prevention program during junior high school were less likely to have violations and points on their driving records relative to control group participants that did not receive the prevention program. Findings indicated that antidrinking attitudes mediated the effect of the intervention on driving violations, but not points. These results support the hypothesis that the behavioral effects of competence-enhancement prevention programs can extend to risk behaviors beyond the initial focus of intervention, such as risky driving.
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