Title

Influence of social interaction on women college students’ electronic gambling machine behaviour

Abstract

Social influence affects college students’ gambling behaviours. However, few studies have experimentally investigated the influence of social interaction on college students’ gambling behaviour, and those studies that have yielded mixed findings. Women college students (n = 109) who endorsed recreational gambling behaviour were randomly assigned to gamble on electronic gambling machines (EGMs) in three conditions: warm social interaction from a confederate (i.e., initiating and maintaining conversation), cold social interaction from a confederate (i.e., refraining from initiating and maintaining conversation), or gambling alone. On average, participants in the warm social interaction condition placed significantly fewer spins and spent more time placing bets on the EGMs compared to the cold social interaction and no confederate conditions. When examining gambling behaviour over time, participants in the warm social interaction condition increased their bet size and the time between their bets over time compared to the cold interaction and no confederate conditions. These results suggest that interpersonal interactions significantly affect gambling behaviour. However, future research is needed to investigate these social processes in other forms of gambling and other gambling experiences.

Publication Title

Journal of Gambling Issues

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