Degree

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department

Agricultural and Extension Education and Evaluation

Document Type

Dissertation

Abstract

Historically, gambling has been a source of many ills within many cultures throughout the United States. During the last five years, there has been a precipitous surge in the accessibility of legalized gambling. Few studies have methodically surveyed the relationships between extent of gambling behavior and the consequences of gambling that may occur. The primary purpose of this study was to determine the influence of selected personal, and perceptual demographic characteristics on the extent of gambling behavior exhibited by female residents of Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

This study used a survey design with instrument distributed by hand at selected community organizations. The instrument was a researcher designed instrument with four scales and selected demographic measures.

Results of the study revealed that there was a high incidence of gambling behavior among woman in Baton Rouge and that this behavior is more prevalent among older women. Additionally, a four variable model explaining extent of gambling behavior was identified which included three perceptual variables and age.

This study concluded that older women tend to be compulsive gamblers more-so than younger women. The researcher recommended additional studies to identify specific differences in age groups on their gambling scores, along with creating programs to help old and young with compulsive gambling behavior. The researcher also recommends community leaders organizing programs that may include getting older individuals involved in community activities such as gardening clubs, and book clubs. Additionally, create a senior community service employment program through community organizations.

The researcher further recommended establishing programs designed to reach younger audiences ahead of exposure to gambling. The designed programs should provide the young with education in personal finance management as well as self-discipline. The programs provide encouragement for more individuals to be responsible with their gambling behavior. These programs should become part of the high school curriculum effective content and methodology will be needed. Based on this conclusion, the researcher recommended studying the journey people take from gambling infrequently to becoming recurrent and finally compulsive gamblers. Studying the journey of these people could give additional insight into when people need help before losing themselves to gambling addiction.

Committee Chair

Burnett, Michael

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