Access Type

Open Access Thesis

Date of Award

January 2013

Degree Type


Degree Name




First Advisor

Paul A. Toro


The relationship between stress and substance abuse within an at-risk adolescent population is an important topic to research. There are several models examining the relationship between stress and substance abuse; however, this study will look to longitudinal methods to examine if there is a temporal relationship between stress and substance abuse in a high risk population. Interviews were conducted at a baseline time point as well as follow-up time points at two, five, and seven years. Two hundred fifty-four participants were retained at the two year follow-up and their data were analyzed using structural equation modeling. The two proposed models had evidence for overall good fit. Two significant temporal pathways emerged between five year alcohol abuse and seven year stress as well as five year illegal drug abuse and seven year stress. Explanations for these particular time points emerging as significant are explored. Additionally, implications of these findings are discussed.