Date of Award:


Document Type:


Degree Name:

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)




Scott C. Bates


Social norms interventions have been shown to be effective in reducing problematic alcohol use on college campuses. However, not all interventions have been successful, and the campus environment may be responsible for the variable reactions that students have to these interventions. The following three articles investigate the nature and utility of social norms interventions in an environment where alcohol use is relatively low. The first article details an online social norms intervention implemented on a low-use campus. Results suggest that if adapted to the campus culture, a social norms approach to reducing alcohol use could be successful in this unique environment. The second article investigates the impact of social norms in the form of censuring alcohol use. Using the theory of reasoned action, the study shows how alcohol use differs for those exposed to different types of norms, and how attitude toward being censured may change whether exposure to a particular social norm is indicative of decreased alcohol use. The third article is a process evaluation of the social norms intervention in a unique environment. It reviews difficulties encountered in implementing an intervention as well as recommendations for future online approaches to intervention implementation.




This work made publicly available electronically on December 23, 2010.

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