Date of Award

Spring 5-22-2021

Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)




Aesoon Park


alcohol, cannabis, college, consequences, COVID-19, solitary

Subject Categories

Clinical Psychology | Psychology | Social and Behavioral Sciences


Alcohol and cannabis use are remarkably prevalent among college students, with 60% reporting past-month alcohol use and 25% reporting past-month cannabis use. Emerging evidence suggests that a considerable portion of college students use alcohol or cannabis alone, and that rates of solitary use may be higher for cannabis than for alcohol. However, despite substantial evidence connecting solitary alcohol use with a number of affective and substance-related correlates, research on similar associations for solitary cannabis use remains lacking. Furthermore, no college studies to date have assessed solitary use of both alcohol and cannabis and consequently little is known about differences between solitary alcohol and cannabis use in terms of use patterns, correlates and consequences. In this cross-sectional survey study, college students who were life-time alcohol and/or cannabis users (N = 190) completed online questionnaires assessing solitary alcohol and cannabis use behaviors, social and affective correlates, and substance-related consequences. Solitary alcohol and cannabis use were common (40% and 42% respectively), with solitary cannabis use particularly common among more frequent users. Solitary alcohol use was associated with greater social isolation, while solitary cannabis use was associated with greater interpersonal sensitivity and pandemic-related stress. The current study adds to the scant literature of solitary substance use by extending the documented role of affective and interpersonal sensitivities from solitary alcohol research to include solitary cannabis use.


Open Access



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