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U18 Grantees

College Research Partnership Awards for Rapid Response to College Problems

University of San Diego

  • PI -- Louise Stanger, Ed.D.
  • Title of Project: University of San Diego Freshman Research Initiative
  • U01 Researcher Collaborator: Mark Wood, Ph.D.
  • NIAAA Scientific Staff Collaborator: Judith Arroyo, Ph.D.

  • Summary:
    The purpose of the University of San Diego Freshman Research Initiative (FRI) is to design, implement, and evaluate the use of a parent-based intervention (PBI) aimed at preventing and reducing heavy drinking and alcohol-related problems among matriculating freshmen. Developed by Rob Turrisi and colleagues, the PBI consists of an informational handbook given to parents of incoming freshmen. Based on parent-teen communication processes, the PBI has been effective in significantly reducing heavy drinking and related problems among undergraduates in other university contexts.

    In the initial year of the FRI (2005), a random sample of matriculating freshmen (N=450) are being recruited during the summer. The students are asked to complete on-line alcohol use surveys in the summer before matriculation (baseline) and again during the midpoint of the fall semester (follow-up). Randomly selected parents of one-half of the student sample (N=225) are being recruited to receive the PBI (all parents of participating students are asked to complete parent-teen communication surveys at baseline and follow-up). Outcome measures (i.e., alcohol use and related measures) will be analyzed as a function of the group of students whose parents received the PBI versus the group of students whose parents did not receive the PBI. The FRI is also examining acculturation processes as they may relate to heavy drinking and related consequences among freshmen of Latina/o origin. The FRI hopes to replicate the study on a larger sample in the second year of the grant.

    Please direct communications regarding the USD FRI to


Last reviewed: 11/23/2005

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