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Adolescent behavior, smoking, students, theory of planned behavior, tobacco, tobacco use



  1. Hanson, Mary Jane S. PhD, CRNP, FNP-BC


Purpose: To explore the association between cigarette smoking intention and attitude, subjective norm, and perceived behavioral control as identified by the Theory of Planned Behavior (TPB) in a cohort of nonsmoking teenagers.


Methods: A convenience sample of 76 nonsmoking students from a rural Northeastern Pennsylvania high school completed a self-administered questionnaire based on the TPB, which included cigarette smoking behavior, intention, and the direct measures of attitude, subjective norm, and perceived behavioral control.


Conclusions: Regression analyses demonstrated that all three independent variables (attitude, subjective norm, and perceived behavioral control) contributed significantly to the respondents' intention to not smoke cigarettes, accounting for 64% of the variance. These findings may have implications for promoting nonsmoking behavior.


Implications for practice: This is the first study to examine the efficacy of the TPB in predicting the intention to not smoke in a cohort of all nonsmokers. The intention to not smoke was significantly correlated with the respondents' negative general attitudes toward cigarette smoking, belief that significant others would disapprove of their cigarette smoking, and positive tobacco refusal self-efficacy. Understanding the factors associated with nonsmoking behavior in teenagers is important information for nurse practitioners, as we develop strategies to encourage and reinforce cigarette smoking abstinence.