Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Type



College of Education and Human Services


Learning Sciences and Human Development

Committee Chair

Carol Markstrom.

Committee Co-Chair

Kristin Moilanen

Committee Member

Jennifer Adams


The purpose of this study was to fill gaps in previous literature on adolescent involvement in activities that are school-based in relation adolescent alcohol, tobacco, marijuana, and illicit substance use, while taking into account important individual and sociodemographic variables. Research was conducted with 49 12th grade students in two public high school in North Central West Virginia. Data were collected using an internet questionnaire accessible to students on Survey Monkey. The questionnaire consisted of tobacco, alcohol, marijuana, and illicit drug use questions that were derived directly from the Youth Risk Behavior Survey (YRBS) questions pertaining to students involvement in school-based activities during the past school year. The present study tested three separate hypotheses. The first hypothesis was that higher rates of involvement in extracurricular activities would be associated with lower levels of substance use. The present study found statistically significant negative relationships between involvement in school-based activities and tobacco and alcohol use. The second hypothesis was that males would report higher levels of substance use than females, especially males involved in sports activities. A hierarchical regression analyses showed that the addition of gender and sports involvement into the model did not explain a significant portion of the variance in tobacco, alcohol, or illicit drug use. Finally, the third hypothesis was that adolescents from the lower SES school would have higher rates of substance use than those adolescents from the higher SES school. Three separate mean-level comparisons by school found that students from the lower SES school were not significantly more likely to use cigarettes, alcohol, or illicit drugs than students from the lower SES school. Result findings are discussed in relation to implications of the study, study limitations, and recommendations for future research.