Caucasian and hispanic early adolescent substance use: Parenting, personality, and school adjustment

Daniel J. Flannery, Alexander T. Vazsonyi, David C. Rowe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Scopus citations


The purpose of this study was to examine the influence of parenting, personality, and school adjustment on early adolescent substance use. The sample consisted of 1,023 6th and 7th graders (mean age = 12.7 years) about equally divided between males and females. Using structural equation modeling, similarity in developmental process across gender and ethnic groups was confirmed. Hierarchical nested modeling revealed few direct effects of personality or parenting on experimentation or illicit use; rather, both latent traits were mediated by school adjustment. The final mediated model demonstrated excellent fit, accounting for 59% of the total variance in licit substance use and 21% of the variance in illicit use. Findings indicate (a) similarity in etiology of early adolescent substance use across gender and ethnicity; (b) the importance of examining multiple domains of influence on adolescent substance use; and (c) the need to examine mediated versus direct effects models in predicting early adolescent substance use.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)71-89
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of Early Adolescence
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 1996

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Life-span and Life-course Studies


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