Searchable Title

Development and initial testing of the brief adolescent smoking curiosity scale (ASCOS). Copyright: Elsevier Ltd.

Reference Type

Journal Article

Authors, Section

Khalil, Georges E.; Calabro, Karen S.; Prokhorov, Alexander V.

Title, Section

Development and initial testing of the brief adolescent smoking curiosity scale (ASCOS). Copyright: Elsevier Ltd.

Publication Year


Journal Title

Addictive behaviors








PMID: 29127786




BACKGROUND: Although the reasons behind tobacco smoking at young age are complex, research has identified curiosity as a potent driver of smoking among adolescents. OBJECTIVE: The objective of the current study is to develop and provide initial evidence of reliability and validity of a short scale assessing smoking curiosity among adolescents (first measure of its kind). In particular, we developed and tested the adolescent smoking curiosity scale (ASCOS). METHODS: After scale development, 101 adolescents completed a survey on smoking-related measures, including ASCOS (June to August 2014). We conducted exploratory factor analysis and Cronbach's alpha calculation to inspect factor-structure and reliability. We conducted multiple linear regression models to examine the scale's capacity to predict antecedents of smoking initiation. RESULTS: Factor analysis supported a single-factor structure of smoking curiosity. ASCOS was internally reliable (Cronbach's alpha=0.83). Controlling for demographics, the measure correlated significantly with temptation to try smoking (β=0.41, p<0.01), number of friends who smoke (β=0.27, p<0.01), agreeing with the pros of smoking (β=0.41, p<0.001), sensation seeking (β=0.21, p<0.05), and depression (β=0.23, p<0.01). When controlling for a single-item measure for smoking curiosity, ASCOS significantly predicted susceptibility to smoke cigarettes (OR=3.40, p<0.05) and cigars (OR=6.66, p<0.01). CONCLUSIONS: ASCOS presented good psychometric properties and passed initial validity-testing through associations with antecedents of smoking. ASCOS was a better predictor of susceptibility to smoke than did a traditional single-item measure used by previous research. As an implication, ASCOS can be crucial to the development of tailored interventions for smoking prevention that can reduce smoking curiosity.

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