Dr. Padovano shares findings from a study about adolescents and alcohol.


We hold expectancies about virtually everything we do. That is, based on observations of others’ behavior, we expect that if we do X, then Y will happen. Dr. Treloar Padovano and colleagues examined how expectancies about the likely outcomes of drinking alcohol are shaped by first drinking experiences in a large sample of adolescents surveyed regularly from middle school through high school. Through utilizing Dr. Jackson's longitudinal iSAY (internet surveys about you) data, this work was able to tease apart the effects of vicarious learning (i.e., learning through observations of others) and first-hand learning (i.e., learning through your own direct experiences) and alcohol expectancy development.