Perceived Importance of Marijuana to the College Experience Scale (PIMCES): Initial development and validation


Objective: Internalization of college substance use culture refers to the degree to which an individual perceives the use of that substance to be an integral part of the college experience. Although there is a growing literature characterizing this construct for alcohol, the present study describes the development and validation of a new measure to assess the internalization of the college marijuana use culture, the Perceived Importance of Marijuana to the College Experience Scale (PIMCES). Method: We recruited a large, diverse sample (N = 8,141) of college students from 11 participating universities. We examined the psychometric properties of the PIMCES and evaluated its concurrent validity by examining its associations with marijuana-related outcomes. Results: A single-factor, eight-item PIMCES demonstrated good model fit and high internal consistency (Cronbach’s α = .89) and was correlated with marijuana user status, frequency of marijuana use, marijuana consequences, and injunctive norms. Conclusions: Overall, the PIMCES exhibits sound psychometric properties. The PIMCES can serve as a possible mediator of the effects of personality and other factors on marijuana-related outcomes and may be a promising target for marijuana interventions.

Publication Title

Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs