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Au Psy492 M6 A2 Beacham L.Doc


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Au Psy492 M6 A2 Beacham L.Doc

  1. 1. Examining the effect of marijuana on adolescence academic achievements<br />Linda Beacham<br />April 15, 2010<br />Advance Psychology 492<br />Dr. Jennifer Rawley<br />Argosy University<br />Abstracts<br />The use of marijuana in adolescents has been associated with academic decline. Marijuana use that begins before a child reaches high school will increase their chances of not completing high school. The study will examine the relationship between academic achievement and the use of marijuana. Data was collected from several studies previously conducted with student ages 12 to 18 years. Surveys, parallel questionnaires and face to face interviews were conducted and student test scores were evaluated before use and after beginning to use marijuana. The studies also included parents both single and married. The race was a combination of Caucasian, African American and Hispanics. Male and female participant were used. Research suggests that the lack of motivation for school, general deviance, self esteem, peers and relationship with parents to have a more profound effect on academics. Marijuana was introduced because of these confounding factors. In some cases marijuana was also found to improve or have no ill effect on adolescence achievement.<br />Keywords: Academics, marijuana, education, adolescence.<br />Marijuana use is on the rise for adolescent in grades 8th, 10th and 12th grade. NHSDA (1997). An estimated 13 million youths aged 12 to 17 become involved with alcohol, tobacco and other drugs annually (Lennox, Cecchini). Marijuana use is more common among males than female students, and used more by Caucasians than African American or Hispanics male and female. Marijuana can effect short term memory, verbal skills and impair judgment. Long term marijuana use can cause amotivational syndrome which is associated with neurophysiological effects on the limbic system-cortical connection. (Miller, 1979). Lack of motivation, not caring about their life, fatigue and no desire to work. This type of behavior amongst adolescent can affect the school work and performance. Family support and early interventions seem to be the key to deterring marijuana use and success in academics. The purpose of this paper is to exam the empirical relationship between marijuana use and adolescence academic achievement. <br />Using marijuana usually begins for student during secondary school grade. Illicit drug use among teens was on the decline according to statistics from 2005. Marijuana was the most commonly used drug for among adolescent age 16 and 17 years old. Marijuana use is preceded by the initiation of cigarette smoking and alcohol use in most cases. Reasons for initiation vary from attachment to parents and peers, developmental changes, and exposure to drug-related attitudes of parents and peers (Bailey, 1990; Hubbard, 1990). For the youngest adolescents family relationships have an important role in deterring marijuana usage. Adolescents who have an A and B grade averages are less likely to use illicit drugs. Student who have D average are more likely to begin using drugs. A lack of motivation in school and limited involvement outside of academics allow for deviant behavior and association with drug use can ensue. <br /> Chronic Marijuana use can begin to affect the cognitive function (National Institute on Drug Abuse 1982). Cognitive development affects the learning process and in turn affects academic motivation (Newcomb and Bentler, 1986). Chronic use of marijuana can produce small significant impairment of verbal skills, vocabulary and reading comprehension, mathematical abilities or general abilities (Block, Farnham, Braveman, Noyes, Ghoniem). These results of these statistics were based on a study in Iowa schools test scores from the ITBS test from 4 graders and 12th graders. The student we tested before the use of marijuana and again after the onset of marijuana use. When adolescents drug usage increases, it reduces the educational attainment by about 1 year (Register, Williams, Grimes 2001). Adolescents will usually be suspended or expelled from school due to truancy which can result in failing grades causes the student not to return to school. Usage of marijuana can also lead to criminal behavior which can limit the amount of scholarships a student may be able to obtain (Blackmore & Low 1983). The adolescent who begins drug use will then limit opportunity for better paying jobs by decreasing the amount of education they may be able to afford. Student who lack motivation in academics because of drug use increase the probability of not completing high school or college involvement (Andrew & Duncan 1997). Marijuana use has also been linked to an increase in self reflection which can lead to new levels of mastery or inhibit mastery (Dweck & Elliot). Marijuana use has also been hypothesized to “increase educational attainment if the consumption of drugs reduces stress and anxiety” (Register, Williams, & Grimes). “Drug use can be used as a ‘coping mechanism’ that leads to higher completion rates” (Windle & Tutzauer). The results were taken from a study using national samples of young adults who self reported drug use. These results still do not negate the fact the more cigarettes, alcohol and marijuana or other drugs used, the more likely the students will perform poorly in school, drop out or not continue on to higher education (Lennox & Cecchini 2008). <br />Preventing the use of marijuana or other illicit drugs is crucial in the outcome of adolescent academic success. Parents, student, school officials, families and peers must all be active participant in the prevention of drug use. Schools should provide programs that target underachievers to help with progress in academic courses. Pro-social role models can assist by provided positive influences in young student lives. Family connection/good mother relationship and reduction of family conflict have been shown to make a significant difference in preventing initiation of marijuana or alcohol and other drugs (Dishion et al., 1995). Participation in two or more youth activities provide adolescents with stimulant that deters drug use. NARCONON™ A drug education curriculum for high school student conducted a non-randomized trial where a student completed a 6 month program that successfully showed a reduction in drug use among youths (Lennox & Cecchini 2008). <br />The conclusion of the finding from the research and studies found that there is a significant reduction in the academic success of adolescents who are chronic user of marijuana. Drug use is associated with fewer years of formal education, resulting fewer and lower paying job. Marijuana use is found to be used widely by whites, African Americans and Hispanic adolescents. Although marijuana does cause cognitive impairment, most issues with adolescent under achievement is a result of deviant behavior, low self esteem and low academic motivation with lead to illicit drug use. <br />References<br />Lennox, Richard D., Cecchini, Marie A. (2008). The NARCONON ™ drug education curriculum for high school students: A non-randomized, controlled prevention trial <br />Andrews, Judy A., Duncan, Susan C. (1997) Examining the reciprocal relation between academic motivation and substance use: Effects of family relationships, self-esteem, and general deviance. Journal of behavioral medicine, Vol. 20. No. 6<br />Register, Charles A., Williams, Donald R., Grimes, Paul W. (2001), Adolescent drug use and educational attainment. Education economics, Vol. 9, No 1, 2001.<br />Zimmerman, Marc. A., Cone-Schmeelk, Karen H. (2003). A longitudinal analysis of adolescent substance use and school motivation among African American youth. Journal of research in adolescence 13(2) p. 185-210.<br />Block, Robert I., Farnham, Sara, Braveman, Kathleen, Noyes Jr., Russell, Ghoneim, M. M. (2003). Long-term marijuana use and subsequent effects on learning and cognitive functions related to school achievement: preliminary study. <br /> <br />