Predicting Tobacco Use across the First Year of College Academic Article uri icon


  • Objective

    The purpose of this study was to assess patterns of tobacco use across the first year of college, transitions in use, and associated predictors.


    The frequency of tobacco use (cigarettes, cigars, smokeless tobacco, and hookah) during the fall and spring of 4073 college students' first year at college were used as indicators in latent class (LCA) and latent transition analyses (LTA).


    The LCA yielded 3 classes that represent levels of use frequency and not specific tobacco product classes: non-using, experimenting, and frequent using. The LTA results demonstrate stability in class membership from fall to spring. The most common transition was for the fall experimenters to transition out of experimentation. A series of demographic, environmental, and intrapersonal predictors were found to influence both fall class membership, and transitions from fall to spring.


    Students are likely to use multiple alternative tobacco products along with cigarettes. Their frequency of use of these products is fairly stable across the first year of college. Predictors reflecting experiences during the first year of college had the greatest impact on college tobacco use, demonstrating the importance of the college experience on young adult tobacco use.

published proceedings

  • American Journal of Health Behavior

author list (cited authors)

  • Cooke, M. E., Nasim, A., Cho, S. B., Kendler, K. S., Clark, S. L., & Dick, D. M.

citation count

  • 6

complete list of authors

  • Cooke, Megan E||Nasim, Aashir||Cho, Seung Bin||Kendler, Kenneth S||Clark, Shaunna L||Dick, Danielle M

publication date

  • July 2016