Profiles of African American College Students' Alcohol Use and Sexual Behaviors: Associations With Stress, Racial Discrimination, and Social Support.


Journal Article

Though studies show that alcohol use and sexual activity increase during emerging adulthood, few studies examine within-ethnic group differences, particularly among African American college students. This investigation utilized a latent class analytic methodology to identify risk behavior profiles of alcohol use (frequency and amount of alcohol consumed), sexual activity (number of intimate partners), and co-occurring risk behaviors (drinking before sexual intercourse) among 228 African American college students. This investigation also examined whether identified risk behavior profiles were associated with stress (interpersonal, intrapersonal, academic, and environmental), experiences of racial discrimination, and social support (from family, friends, and the college community). Results identified five distinct profiles within this sample: (a) High Sexual Risk-above-average sexual activity; (b) Abstainers-below-average alcohol use and sexual activity; (c) Low Risk-average alcohol use and sexual activity; (d) Alcohol Risk-above-average alcohol use and below-average sexual activity; and (e) Co-Occurring Risk-above-average alcohol use and sexual activity. Identified profiles differed across interpersonal and environmental stress, and self-reported frequency of experiences with racial discrimination. Implications for prevention programs and interventions aimed at reducing alcohol and sexual activity for African American college students are discussed.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Metzger, IW; Cooper, SM; Ritchwood, TD; Onyeuku, C; Griffin, CB

Published Date

  • March 2017

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 54 / 3

Start / End Page

  • 374 - 385

PubMed ID

  • 27215314

Pubmed Central ID

  • 27215314

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1559-8519

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1080/00224499.2016.1179709


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States