Graduation Year

2003

Document Type

Thesis

Degree

M.A.

Degree Granting Department

Psychology

Major Professor

Goldman, Mark

Keywords

method comparison, disimilarities matrix, similarities collection, individual difference scaling, multidimensional scaling

Abstract

Alcohol expectancies have been shown to be predictive of risk for alcohol problems. Experimental research studies have challenged participants' expectancies with the end result demonstrating a mediational effect on participant drinking. Cognitive research using priming and word recognition tasks have led to the theory that expectancies operate in an associative network. Using dissimilarities information this network has been mapped using multidimensional scaling. The current techniques for collecting dissimilarities information directly in alcohol expectancy research has been limited to the use of the paired comparisons tasks. In order to investigate the utility of a different similarities task a comparison was made between a card sorting task and paired comparisons.

The overall comparisons of matrices and Individual Difference Scaling (INDSCAL; Carroll & Chang, 1970) results followed the expected trends and generally supported the hypotheses that the two methods would provide essentially the same information. However, a possible method effect for gender was observed. The method effect was seen when comparing across methods within the females dichotomized by drinker category. Further studies are necessary to replicate these findings and to attempt to identify which method has the effect.

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