Author(s)

Melissa Buscemi

Date Approved

9-30-2014

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

M.A. School Psychology-Professional School Psychology

Department

Educational Services, Administration, and Higher Education

College

College of Education

First Advisor

Allen, Terri

Subject(s)

Post-traumatic stress disorder;Substance abuse;College students

Disciplines

Higher Education | Student Counseling and Personnel Services

Abstract

The purpose of this exploratory study was to determine a significant correlation between post-traumatic stress (PTSD) symptoms and substance use in undergraduate college students. A review of the existing literature was examined and showed a significant correlation between PTSD and substance use, including alcohol, marijuana and other drugs. Literature also showed correlations between PTSD and cigarette use in undergraduate college students. A PTSD questionnaire was conducted based on DSM-5 criteria scale. A personal Experience Screening questionnaire for adults (PESQ-A) was also used to examine the frequency and degree of substances used by participants. Correlational analyses for this study revealed no significant relationship between PTSD symptoms and substance use. However, due to the limitations of this study, including a very small sample size, the interpretations of the findings are discussed.

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