Daily Archives: 28/11/2014

Drink Refusal Self Efficacy

So while at the Alcohol Concern conference last week a lecturer, Dr Dom Conroy from Birkbeck University, talked about Drink Refusal Self Efficacy (DRSE).  This was a new expression and phenomenon to me and so I’ve been busy researching.

Here are the initial findings:

Drink Refusal Self Efficacy is a cognitive construct related to our belief in one’s ability to resist drinking in, usually high-risk, situations.  It originates from Bandura’s (1986) concept of efficacy expectations – one’s perceived ability to achieve a desired outcome in a particular situation.  DRSE has been studied in relation to resisting heavy drinking use, resisting urges and confidence in not using and Burling et al (1989) showed a relationship between abstainers and high refusal self-efficacy.

The DRSE questionnaire looks at:

  1. Social pressure
  2. Emotional relief
  3. Opportunistic
  4. Alcohol dependence scale
  5. Alcohol quantity
  6. Drinking frequency

Having high levels of DRSE is unsurprisingly a predictor of success.

DRSE alongside alcohol expectancy, our expectations about the effects of drinking alcohol on one’s behavior and mood,  have consistently been demonstrated to be useful to our understanding of alcohol use and abuse.

What struck me about this research and knowledge is that it is aligned to Bandura’s social learning theory, better known as role-modelling, to you and I.  Two of the 3 factors on the DRSE questionnaire are environmental – social pressure and opportunistic.

I can’t help but wonder if we changed the drinking culture around us so that there was less role-modelling of drinking behaviour we would see a shift in attitudes and levels of drinking.  Look at what’s happened with smoking.  It is role-modelled less so less people are engaging with it.

For me Bandura’s theory of role-modelling is one of the most important as I only have to see what happens to my own children’s behaviour and what ticks of mine they have taken on already to know how critical it is and that is why I’ve stopped.

Were you aware of DRSE and what do you think?

PS My 500th free e-book subscriber has signed up so guess I better extend the offer!  The 600th subscriber gets the next free place! 🙂