Coping Styles as Predictors of Maladjustment, Anxiety, and Alcohol use in College Students
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The purpose of this study was to determine if unhealthy coping predict higher levels of maladjustment, anxiety and alcohol consumption in college students. The hypotheses posited there would be a significant positive relationship between maladjustment, anxiety and unhealthy coping styles, as well as a significant positive relationship between unhealthy coping styles and maladjustment, as well as between unhealthy coping styles maladjustment and alcohol consumption. Results suggest that emotion oriented coping (EOC) significantly predicts higher levels of anxiety and maladjustment, and task oriented coping (TOC) significantly predicts lower levels of maladjustment and anxiety. This study also found different coping styles did not significantly predict alcohol use or abuse in college students. The author suggests these results may be at least partially explained by the high baseline incidence of alcohol use found in the drinking culture on college campuses. Avoidance oriented coping (AOC) did not significantly predict any of the three criterion variables; perhaps be due to a strong overlap between AOC and EOC revealed by the regression equations conducted. It is hoped that findings such as these will lead to interest in how coping styles affect success in college and, in turn, enable the use of more adaptive task oriented coping strategies by young adults facing the stresses and pressures of the college environment, including learning to manage their level of alcohol use.