Effects of Gambling Frequency and Perceived Risk or Benefit of Gambling on Undergraduate Students’ Evaluations of Gamblers

Alexis Pitzer

Abstract


Gambling is a common past time in the United States. Gambling destinations such as Las Vegas allow people to fantasize about the possibility of winning a life’s fortune. Previous research on perceptions of gambling has demonstrated that when the benefits of gambling are salient, individuals’ likelihood of participating in gambling activities increases, whereas if the risks of gambling are salient, individuals’ likelihood of participating in gambling activities decreases (Wickwire et al., 2007). However, to date, no research has examined how gamblers’ beliefs about gambling (i.e., risks, benefits) and the frequency of gambling influences how the gambler is perceived. A total of 157 participants (112 female, 45 male) learned about an individual who chose not to gamble, gambled occasionally, or gambled frequently because of the perceived risks or benefits associated with gambling. Participants more positively evaluated (but did not anticipate responding more favorably to) the individual who chose not to gamble because he/she knew the risks versus focused on the benefits of gambling. In contrast, for individuals who occasionally or frequently gambled, there were no differences in the personality evaluation of (or anticipated

Keywords


gambling, gambling beliefs, college students

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