The effects of homeschooling on participation in drinking alcohol among adolescents and emerging adults.
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Thomson, Robert A., 1977-
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Parents often choose to homeschool their children for reasons that, if their goals are accomplished, should contribute to relatively low levels of substance use among their children. Specifically, many parents desire to foster family- and religiously-centered values, while they are also concerned about the potential of negative peer pressure in public schools. In this paper, I use data from three waves of the National Study of Youth and Religion (NSYR) to study the relationship between homeschooling and alcohol use. As hypothesized, I find that homeschool students do tend to drink less than public and private school students. Religiosity was found to be the strongest explanation of the observed group difference in cross-sectional analyses, while prior drinking was the dominant predictor in longitudinal analyses. In addition, concepts related to social bonding theory partially explain group differences, whereas those related to social learning and general strain tended to suppress them.