How generalizable are the effects of smoking prevention programs? Refusal skills training and parent messages in a teacher-administered program.


Journal Article

This study investigated both substantive and methodological issues associated with school-based smoking prevention programs. Substantive issues included the efficacy of a refusal skills training curriculum and of parent messages mailed to students' homes. Methodological issues included the effects of assigning classrooms versus entire schools to experimental conditions and determination of the effects of attrition on internal and external validity. Results revealed differential impact for different subgroups of adolescents. The refusal skills program produced lower rates of smoking than the control condition for students who were smokers at the pretreatment assessment but may have produced detrimental effects among males who were nonsmokers at pretest. The provision of parent messages did not affect outcome. Method of assignment (schools versus classrooms) failed to produce significant effects, and attrition did not affect internal validity. However, the above differential findings, as well as the impact of attrition on external validity, raise questions concerning the generalizability of smoking prevention programs.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Biglan, A; Glasgow, R; Ary, D; Thompson, R; Severson, H; Lichtenstein, E; Weissman, W; Faller, C; Gallison, C

Published Date

  • December 1987

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 10 / 6

Start / End Page

  • 613 - 628

PubMed ID

  • 3437450

Pubmed Central ID

  • 3437450

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1573-3521

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0160-7715

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1007/bf00846658


  • eng