Retrospective investigation into substance abuse habits of adolescents in post primary school from an urban and rural perspective and what their attitudes are and psychosocial factors

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McSteen, Tracey
Issue Date
MA in Addiction Studies
Dublin Business School
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This study investigates the prevalence of substance misuse in Third Level Institutions and to include a retrospective look at years in Post Primary School. Also it will explore if there is a relationship between self-esteem, coping strategies, general health, dependency levels and attitudes towards drug use. It is expected that low level of self-esteem and coping strategies will be shown in those using substances. The General Health Questionnaire (1978), Rosenberg's Self Esteem Scale (1989), Leeds Dependency Questionnaire (2001), the Brief COPE (1997) and a self-constructed questionnaire was issued to 102 third level students. Comparisons were made across randomly selected participants from the mixed colleges. Analysis was conducted through frequencies, correlations, t-test, Chi Square and Regression ANOVE procedures. Results found a correlation between age of first smoke and age of first use of hash/marijuana. Also a correlation was found between Leeds Dependency Questionnaire and General Health Questionnaire, the Paired Sample t-test found a relationship between past and present drinking habits. The multiple regressions across the 24 predictors found significance on gender, general health, self-distraction, active coping, substance use and self-blame in relation to drug dependency. The association between past and present drugs was found to be significant on hash/marijuana use. Data collection for this study could be used to help in the development of drug prevention programmes aimed specifically at Third Level Institutions.