To read this content please select one of the options below:

Drinking to cope and college grade point average

Morgan A. Douglass (Department of Psychology, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado, USA)
Madison L. Colley (Department of Psychology, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado, USA)
Alexander J. Tyskiewicz (Department of Psychology, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado, USA)
Mark A. Prince (Department of Psychology, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado, USA)

Drugs, Habits and Social Policy

ISSN: 2752-6739

Article publication date: 28 September 2023

Issue publication date: 28 November 2023

84

Abstract

Purpose

College students report high levels of stress, with academic performance serving as a major contributor. The purpose of this study was to examine how drinking to cope with stressors related to student grade point average (i.e., GPA), while testing academic achievement orientations (i.e. mastery or performance) as possible moderators for this relationship.

Design/methodology/approach

In total, 325 undergraduate college students from a university in the Mountain West of the USA reported on GPA, daily drinking, coping and academic achievement orientations.

Findings

Drinking to cope negatively predicted GPA. Holding a mastery academic achievement orientation was related to higher GPA, whereas a performance academic achievement orientation was related to a more deleterious relationship between drinking to cope and GPA. However, neither orientation (i.e. mastery or performance) moderated the relationship between drinking to cope and GPA.

Originality/value

Regardless of academic achievement orientation, drinking to cope was negatively associated with GPA. The negative relationship between drinking to cope and GPA for those with a performance orientation may suggest that these students drink to cope with academic stressors. Importantly, students who choose to drink alcohol to cope with academic stress may paradoxically experience poorer academic performance. Future research should examine whether teaching a mastery orientation to college students can protect against the deleterious effects of drinking to cope on GPA.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

This study was accepted by the Colorado Multi-Institutional Review Board at Colorado State University (Protocol ID: 20-9960H).

Funding: None to declare.

Disclosure statement: The authors report there are no competing interests to declare.

Citation

Douglass, M.A., Colley, M.L., Tyskiewicz, A.J. and Prince, M.A. (2023), "Drinking to cope and college grade point average", Drugs, Habits and Social Policy, Vol. 24 No. 4, pp. 342-350. https://doi.org/10.1108/DHS-05-2023-0016

Publisher

:

Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2023, Emerald Publishing Limited

Related articles