Dr. James Hall
Participation year
Project title

The Association of Adolescent Victimization and Substance Use

Adolescent substance use is a growing public health problem that is associated with increases in criminal activity, school attendance and performance, and other problems (Wall & Kohl, 2007). A number of drugs have shown declines in usage in the findings of the 2006 Monitoring the Future data. However, the use of substances especially among adolescents is still a widespread issue. Approximately 48% of the young people in schools have tried an illicit drug by the time they graduate from high school. The use of substances especially among adolescents has the potential to be dangerous to society and be extremely damaging to the teens. In addition to substance use and abuse, many adolescents are victimized physically, emotionally, or sexually. As of 2005, an estimated 899,000 children were reported to be victims of abuse (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services [DHHS], 2005). Of this number, 16.6 % were physically abused, 9.3 % were sexually abused, and 7.1 % experienced emotional maltreatment. A recent study done by the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse (CASA) in adolescents found that females who have been sexually or physically abused are twice as likely to smoke, use alcohol, and/or use drugs than girls that have not been abused. Therefore, research on the association of adolescent substance abuse and victimization is very significant.
Lavonna  Connell
Oakwood College