This study examines the relationship between ethnic identity, risk and protective factors for substance use and academic achievement. Risk factors include deviant behavior and susceptibility to peer influence, while the protective factor is self-reported “confidence” not to use substances. The sample consists of 2,370 Mexican American students enrolled in eighth, ninth, and tenth grades. Results of the analysis (MANOVA) revealed that females had more positive ethnic identity than males. Furthermore, males were significantly more susceptible to peer influence, reported higher levels of deviant behavior, used more substances and had lower grade point averages than females. There was no significant difference in their “confidence” not to use substances.

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