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Groupdrink: The effects of alcohol and group process on vigilance errors.

Frings, Daniel, Hopthrow, Tim, Abrams, Dominic, Hulbert, Lorne G., Gutierrez, Roberto (2008) Groupdrink: The effects of alcohol and group process on vigilance errors. Group Dynamics: Theory, Research and Practice, 12 (3). pp. 179-190. ISSN 1089-2699. (doi:10.1037/1089-2699.12.3.179) (Access to this publication is currently restricted. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided) (KAR id:20147)

Language: English

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This research examined how group processes alter the impact of alcohol on a judgment task requiring vigilance. The authors compared two competing explanations, deindividuation and group monitoring, for the possible effects of alcohol. Two hundred and eighty-six undergraduates with normal drinking habits undertook a vigilance task alone or in four-person groups having consumed either alcohol (calculated to achieve up to .08 blood alcohol content) or a placebo. The vigilance task required them to count occurrences of the word "the" in a spoken passage. Alcohol significantly impaired the performance of individuals but not groups. Group members performed at a similar level in both conditions, making fewer errors than individuals in the alcohol condition. The fit of different decision-making models were tested. In both the alcohol and placebo conditions, group consensus was predicted by processes consistent with the group monitoring hypothesis. The evidence highlights that under certain conditions, group process can compensate for the cognitively impairing effects of alcohol on individuals.

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1037/1089-2699.12.3.179
Projects: R000223506
Uncontrolled keywords: alcohol; group decisions; vigilance; deindividuation; group monitoring
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Divisions: Divisions > Division of Human and Social Sciences > School of Psychology
Funders: Economic and Social Research Council (
Depositing User: Tim Hopthrow
Date Deposited: 21 Jul 2009 11:17 UTC
Last Modified: 12 Jul 2022 10:39 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)

University of Kent Author Information

Hopthrow, Tim.

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Abrams, Dominic.

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Hulbert, Lorne G..

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