Master of Arts (MA)



Document Type



Studies have shown that weight concern is prevalent in children and that many children believe smoking can be used to control appetite and weight. However, little is known about the impact of the combination of these factors on smoking initiation in children. Initial research has indicated that weight concern predicts smoking initiation in adolescents, but these studies have not addressed the role of weight control outcome expectancies. The purpose of this study was to prospectively investigate the relationship between weight concern and smoking initiation, and to evaluate weight control outcome expectancies as a moderator of this relationship in children. Cross-sectional analyses were conducted to determine whether children who had tried smoking possessed greater concern about weight than those who had not. The impact of sex and race on these relationships were also examined. Results indicated that smokers endorsed greater weight concern, F(1, 708) = 6.71, p = .01, and dieting than non-smokers, F(1, 708) = 7.043, p = .008, and that black children had greater weight concern than white children, F(1, 708) = 3.999, p = .046. Dieting predicted smoking at five months, X²(3, N = 708) = 24.297, p = .000, and smokers had greater weight concern over time than non-smokers, F(2, 691) = 3.569, p = .029. Weight control outcome expectancies did not predict smoking at five months, and was not supported as a moderator of the relationship between weight concern and smoking.



Document Availability at the Time of Submission

Release the entire work immediately for access worldwide.

Committee Chair

Amy L. Copeland



Included in

Psychology Commons