Honors Program

Midway Honors

Date of Award


Thesis Professor(s)

Meredith K. Ginley

Thesis Professor Department

<--College of Arts and Sciences-->

Thesis Reader(s)

Aubrey R. Dueweke


Introduction. Prior research has found high rates of behavioral health concerns, including several forms of substance use, among community college students. However, the prevalence of non-medical use of prescription stimulants (NMUS) as well as the motivations driving NMUS among community college students is unknown. Methods. Survey results from 13 community colleges within the Tennessee Board of Regents school system were evaluated to explore 1) rates of NMUS, 2) reported motivations for NMUS, and 3) how demographic characteristics including race, age, and income differ based on self-reported reasons for NMUS. Results. NMUS was reported by approximately 9% of the overall sample. The most common motivation for NMUS was to focus on studies or to improve academic performance reported by 67.5% of participants. Demographic characteristics varied between individuals reporting/denying NMUS and reported motivations for NMUS, with younger and urban-residing participants at the highest risk. Conclusions. NMUS is occurring in non-negligible amounts by community college students. Understanding motivations for use provides insight into possible mechanisms for behavior change. Future research should examine the efficacy of challenging specific motivations and expectancies in effort of preventing NMUS among community college students.


East Tennessee State University

Document Type

Honors Thesis - Withheld

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