Childhood social context in relation to alcohol expectancy through early adolescence: A latent profile approach

Wan Ting Chen, Nadia Wang, Kuan Chia Lin, Chieh Yu Liu, Wei J. Chen, Chuan Yu Chen*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Background: The present study aims to (i) identify patterns in the changes of endorsed positive alcohol expectancies (AEs) through early adolescence and (ii) examine associated childhood social context predictors of such profiles. Methods: We used three waves of longitudinal data from the Alcohol-Related Experiences among Children. The baseline sample comprised 928 6th graders from 17 elementary schools in northern Taiwan (response rate = 60 %); subsequent follow-up was conducted at 7th and 8th grade (follow-up rate = 88 %). Data concerning three domains of positive AEs (i.e., global positive transformation, enhancing social behaviors, and promoting relaxation), social context, and alcohol drinking were collected by self-administered questionnaires. Longitudinal latent profile and survey multinomial logistic regression analyses were used to evaluate the association estimates, stratified by childhood alcohol initiation. Results: Three distinct profiles (decreasing, stable, and increasing) of positive AEs were identified for the alcohol-naïve children (n = 466); observing paternal drinking and watching TV more than two hours per day at baseline were strongly linked with the stable and increasing AE profiles (aOR = 1.96–4.80). For the alcohol-experienced children, four profiles (low decreasing, low increasing, high decreasing, and high increasing) emerged; observing maternal drinking was predictive for the high-increasing profile (aOR = 2.94). Regardless of childhood alcohol initiation, recent alcohol use appeared to be the strongest predictor for the increasing profiles of positive AEs. Conclusions: Strategies addressing pro-alcohol social contexts that facilitate a prominent increase in positive AEs should be considered when devising preventive programs targeting underage drinking behaviors and problems.

Original languageEnglish
Article number107851
JournalDrug and Alcohol Dependence
StatePublished - 1 Mar 2020


  • Alcohol expectancy
  • Early adolescence
  • Latent profile
  • Longitudinal study


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