The first study considered for this investigation was an empirical study in which researchers considered tobacco smoking beliefs and risk awareness of university students in 23 countries. Steptoe, Wardle, Weiwei, Baban, Glass, Pelzer, Tsuda and Vinck (2002) designed a study to determine:
…the prevalence of current tobacco smoking, associations with beliefs about the health benefits of not smoking and the awareness of risks for lung cancer and heart disease in university students sampled from 23 countries (p. 1561).
Additionally, the investigation utilized the World Health Organization’s (WTO) model of tobacco epidemic to understand variances in tobacco usage among different countries.
Employing an anonymous questionnaire survey, 19,292 university students (8,482 men and 19,816 women) aged 17-30 studying non-health related disciplines were surveyed from 23 different countries. The researchers used the following instruments: the measure of smoking (which asked the participant to rate their tobacco use based on the number of times the individual has used tobacco); the importance of not smoking as it pertains to health (a Likert-type questionnaire that ranked the participants responses from 1 [low] to 10 [very great] in regard to importance; and risk awareness (questions posed in a yes/no format). Belief ratings for adults and their attitudes concerning smoking were extrapolated for 11 countries to determine if correlations between adult and young adult smoking patterns existed.
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