Social influences on cigarette initiation among college students

Ruth R. Staten, Melody Noland, Mary Kay Rayens, Ellen Hahn, Mark Dignan, S. Lee Ridner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Scopus citations


Objectives: To examine the relationship of demographic and social influence with initiation of cigarette use among undergraduates. Methods: Students were mailed anonymous surveys including 437 participants who indicated that they had not smoked cigarettes before age 18. Of those, 107 became late initiators (24%), and 330 remained never smokers (76%). Results: Those who drank alcohol in college and had at least 1 parent with a college education were more likely to initiate smoking than were those who did not drink and neither parent had attended college. Conclusions: Strategies that focus on reducing alcohol and tobacco use need to be tested.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)353-362
Number of pages10
JournalAmerican Journal of Health Behavior
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2007


  • Cigarette initiation
  • College students
  • Prevention
  • Social influences

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Social Psychology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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