Latent Class Analysis of Drinking Game Consequences Among College Drinkers
Type of DegreePhD Dissertation
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Participation in drinking games has been identified as one specific alcohol-related context linked to increased risk among college students. Despite advances in drinking game research, questions remain about the different types of individuals at risk from participating. The current study utilized latent class analysis to classify individuals based on their endorsement of eight consequences from the Hazardous Drinking Games Measure. Analyses included identification of classes among 656 college students, followed by covariate analyses regressing class membership on motives for playing drinking games, general drinking motives, impulsivity facets, general problematic alcohol use, and specific drinking game behaviors. Next, to account for potential gender differences in latent classes, a multigroup latent class analysis included gender as a grouping variable to create a model that allowed classes to vary by gender where significant differences were identified. In the full sample, three classes were identified, including a class with the fewest number of problems, a class with higher rates of hangovers and becoming sick, and a class with relatively higher rates on a majority of the other consequences. Classes differed in endorsement of motives, impulsivity facets, general problematic consumption, and drinking game behaviors. Multigroup latent class analysis demonstrated gender differences in some item thresholds by class, and gender-specific covariate analyses suggested some differences in risk factors by gender. Results highlight distinct classes of individuals at risk from drinking game participation among the full sample, men, and women, as well as specific factors associated with risk. Recommendations for future studies and potential prevention and intervention efforts are discussed.