Social learning theory postulates that chronic alcohol abusers may have deficits in ability to cope with stressful situations, and these deficits may be associated with relapse after treatment. Attempts to study the hypothesized deficits have been hampered by methodological problems. Therefore, a behavior analytic procedure was used to develop 10 categories of situations based on over 600 drinking situations elicited from alcoholics. Role plays were developed for each of these categories, and samples of alcoholics in treatment were asked to respond as if they were trying not to drink. Videotaped responses were behaviorally rated by trained judges for skill and anxiety, and subjects completed self-report ratings of urge to drink, anxiety, difficulty and skill after each role play. Good interrater reliabilities and internal consistency were found across three samples of alcoholics, with virtually no gender differences. Previous and current investigations show the validity and utility of this instrument. The Alcohol Specific Role Play Test therefore shows promise as a means of assessing alcoholics' reactions to high-risk situations.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Medicine (miscellaneous)