The Effect of Sense of Belonging on Minority Student Drinking on Predominantly White Campuses

Bernadette Ebri and Dr Rose Marie Ward Miami University Department of Kinesiology and Health 106 Phillips Hall Oxford, OH 45056

College drinking is a public health issue and researchers have attributed this to many different social factors (White & Hingson, 2014). Research has examined race related factors and alcohol consumption among ethnic or racial minorities among college students (Heads, 2018). Ethnic and racial minority students are susceptible to a phenomenon referred to as racial battle fatigue (Smith, 2011).  Racial battle fatigue is classified as an accumulation of stress in response to an accumulation of perceived racial tensions (Smith, 2011). Students who perceive such racial tension may feel isolated and feel a reduced sense of belonging. Research has also found a correlation between reduced sense of belonging and drinking behaviors in college students (Litt, 2012).  Although there is some research on the effects of racial battle fatigue on the Black collegiate male experience (Smith, 2016) , there is not much literature that includes the female experience and even less that considers sense of belonging and alcohol consumption. This study will look at the effects of sense of belonging in conjunction with racial battle fatigue on minority college student drinking. We hypothesize that minority students who experience high levels of discrimination and/or low levels of belonging will drink differently and experience more problem drinking behaviors than students who do not experience the same levels of discrimination and belonging. Data collection is ongoing from a mid-sized, Midwestern university using an online survey. Understanding the effects of sense of belonging on minority student drinking is important to best support these students on predominantly white campuses.

Additional Abstract Information

Presenter: Bernadette Ebri

Institution: Miami University

Type: Poster

Subject: Nursing & Public Health

Status: Approved

Time and Location

Session: Poster 9
Date/Time: Wed 12:00pm-1:00pm
Session Number: 6006