Substance Use & Misuse
Background- Zimbardo and Boyd's1 time perspective, or the temporal framework individuals use to process information, has been shown to predict health behaviors such as alcohol use. Previous studies supported the predictive validity of individual dimensions of time perspective, with some dimensions acting as protective factors and others as risk factors. However, some studies produced findings contrary to the general body of literature. In addition, time perspective is a multidimensional construct, and the combination of perspectives may be more predictive than individual dimensions in isolation; consequently, multidimensional profiles are a more accurate measure of individual differences and more appropriate for predicting health behaviors.
Objectives- The current study identified naturally occurring profiles of time perspective and examined their association with risky alcohol use.
Methods- Data were collected from a college student sample (n = 431, mean age = 20.41 years) using an online survey. Time perspective profiles were identified using latent profile analysis.
Results-Boot-strapped regression models identified a protective class that engaged in significantly less overall drinking (β= -0.254) as well as engaging in significantly less episodic high risk drinking (β = -0.274). There was also emerging evidence of a high risk time perspective profile that was linked to more overall drinking (β = 0.198) and engaging in more high risk drinking (β = 0.245), though these differences were not significant.
Conclusions/Importance- These findings support examining time perspective in a multidimensional framework rather than individual dimensions in isolation. Implications include identifying students most in need of interventions, and tailoring interventions to target temporal framing in decision-making.
Original Publication Citation
Braitman, A. L., & Henson, J. M. (2015). The impact of time perspective latent profiles on college drinking: A multidimensional approach. Substance Use & Misuse, 50(5), 664-673. doi:10.3109/10826084.2014.998233
Braitman, Abby L. and Henson, James M., "The Impact of Time Perspective Latent Profiles on College Drinking: A Multidimensional Approach" (2015). Psychology Faculty Publications. 37.