A number of studies have indicated that adolescents who refrain from drinking alcohol have higher self-esteem than do adolescents who drink (Butler, 1980; Young, Werch, & Bakema 1989). Other studies report that adolescents who refrain from drinking are less depressed than those who drink (Workman & Beer, 1989). These associations have also been noted in college students. For example, Deykin, Levy, and Wells (1986) found that alcohol use and depression were associated in college students.
Some of these studies measured alcohol abuse; the present study explored whether the same associations would be found for alcohol use in general. In addition, the present study examined these associations in high school and college students who were both under and over the legal drinking age of 21.
The questionnaire used in this study included the Adolescent Alcohol Involvement Scale (Moberg, 1983) which has fourteen questions about alcohol use, the Rosenberg (1965) Self-esteem Scale, and the Beck Depression Inventory (Beck, Ward, Mendelson, Mock, & Erbaugh, 1961).
The questionnaire was administered …