SUBSTANCE ABUSE AND RELATED NEGATIVE BEHAVIORS OF HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS
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The present study concerned the self-reports of high school students in selected pairwise relationships between: the frequencies of their self-reported use of specified controlled substances and of their self-reported negative school behavior; gender, grade level, and overall grade average. Mediating relationships between school/community variables and the self-reports of frequency of both use of controlled substances and negative school behaviors were also considered.;The population sampled included students in grades nine through twelve: 652 at School A, a rural high school in the southeast section of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and 791 at School B, an urban-suburban high school in the southern tier of New York State.;Data were gathered from student responses to the Primary Prevention Awareness, Attitude and Usage Scales. Each high school was first analyzed separately, and then a comparison was made between the two high schools in order to carry out the exploratory aspect of this study.;In both schools, a significant positive relationship was observed between the self-reported use of cigarettes, beer, wine, liquor, marijuana and stimulants and the self-reported frequency of truancy, lateness, class cutting, referral for disciplinary action, being sent out of the classroom, cheating and vandalism.;Male students in School B reported significantly more frequent use of marijuana than did females. Additionally, in each school, males who reported frequently using specified controlled substances also reported more specified negative school behaviors.;Grade level and the self-reported use of certain controlled substances by students in both School A and School B were significantly and positively related. In addition, School B students in higher grade levels who reported significantly more frequent use of beer, wine and marijuana, also reported more class cutting than similar users in lower grade levels.;A significant negative relationship between overall grade average and use of controlled substances were observed for each school, in part. Self-reported frequent users who reported lower overall grade averages in each school also reported significantly more frequent specified negative behaviors than students who reported higher overall grade averages.
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