Replication and Extension of a Study of Peer Impacts on Attitudes and Drinking Behavior

Investigator: Greg Duncan (with PI Guang Gou, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill)

Funding: William T. Grant Foundation

In earlier work, Duncan found that having a college roommate from a different socioeconomic group makes one more empathetic to that particular socioeconomic group. He also found that college males who binge drank in high school drank much more in college if they roomed with another binge drinker. This project was a replication study that focused on the effects of racial and class diversity on attitudes and behaviors and on problem drinking. Survey and genetic data were collected. The investigators employed a novel approach to gathering DNA and data exploring gene-environment interactions between certain dopamine transporter genes and random assignment to a freshman roommate with a drinking history.