This dissertation analyzes the web-based, interactive intervention, Expectancy Challenge Alcohol Literacy Curriculum, that leverages technology in order to challenge students’ expectancies through a media literacy presentation based on research findings and focuses on decreasing the positive reinforcing value of alcohol.
This dissertation presents a study that revised the previous college-focused validation by evaluating the Expectancy Challenge Alcohol Literacy Curriculum (ECALC) program and its appropriateness for high school students. The ECALC program introduces new information about the physiological effects of alcohol that may compete with pre-existing positive expectations for influence over the individual’s behavior. By focusing on high school students, the author addresses the increasing rates of those students’ increased rates of consuming alcohol in dangerous ways and seeks to provide an effective alcohol prevention and early intervention program, targeted at high schoolers. The author describes the testing and development of the revised ECALC, which has been reduced to one, approximately 45-minute delivery, and changes in narration quantity, aesthetics, and facilitator interaction have been employed to optimize ECALC for students in high school. Results revealed changes in expectancy processes for students who reported alcohol use initiation and changes in mean blood alcohol concentration (BAC) among females in the group.