This study is the first reported test of the unique and combined effects of Brief Motivational Intervention (BMI) and Alcohol Expectancy Challenge (AEC) with heavy drinking college students. Three hundred and thirty-five participants were randomly assigned in a 2 × 2 factorial design to either: BMI, AEC, BMI and AEC, and assessment only conditions. Follow-ups occurred at 1, 3, and 6 months. Unconditional latent curve analyses suggested that alcohol use (Q-F), heavy episodic drinking, and alcohol problems were best modeled as quadratic effects. BMI produced significant decreases in Q-F, heavy drinking, and problems, while AEC produced significant decreases in Q-F and heavy drinking. There was no evidence of an additive effect of combining the interventions. Intervention effects decayed somewhat for BMI and completely for AEC over 6 months. Multi-group analyses suggested similar intervention effects for men and women. BMI effects on alcohol problems were mediated by perceived norms. These findings extend previous research with BMI and AEC but do not support their utility as a combined preventive intervention to reduce collegiate alcohol abuse.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This research was supported by grant R29 AA12241 from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism to Mark Wood. We thank Dr. Jack Darkes for consultation on the AEC and Drs. Peter Monti and Suzanne Colby for their assistance with the grant from which this project originated. We also thank Jay Maddock, Tom Pepper, George Kenna, Suzanne Hawkes, Robert Tilton, Lou Ruffolo, Laura Howe, Emily Houlihan, and the small army of undergraduate research assistants who helped conduct this study.
- Brief intervention
- College students