Fraternity and sorority leaders and members: A comparison of alcohol use, attitudes, and policy awareness

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Date of Original Version



Background : Studies have documented that members of college fraternities and sororities (i.e., Greeks) drink more heavily and experience more alcohol-related consequences than other students. Few studies have examined the role of Greek leaders in the socialization of Greek members. Objectives: The present study investigated how alcohol-related attitudes and behaviors among Greek leaders differ from the attitudes and behaviors of members. Methods: At a single university, two anonymous surveys were conducted in 2006 and 2007 (N=726 and 757, respectively) at fraternity and sorority chapter meetings. All individuals present at the meetings were invited to participate. One-way analyses of covariance (ANCOVAs), controlling for age and sex, were conducted to examine the effect of leadership status on alcohol-related attitudes and behaviors. Zero-inflated negative binomial regression was used to analyze the effect of leadership status on alcohol-impaired driving. Results: Few differences were found between Greek leaders and members. In both years, leaders perceived alcohol control policies as stricter than did members. Notably, leaders and members did not significantly differ in reports of alcohol use or consequences. Conclusion: With this additional study, the literature suggests that alcohol-related attitude and behavioral differences between Greek leaders and members may be highly variable across college and university campuses. Scientific Significance: The socialization process among Greek leaders and members warrants further investigation. The current findings suggest that future research should examine the roles that campus climate and on-campus initiatives may play in the Greek socialization process. Copyright © Informa Healthcare USA, Inc.

Publication Title, e.g., Journal

American Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse