Date of Award


Degree Name

Doctor of Education



First Advisor

Dr. Michael Bahr

Second Advisor

Dr. Dennis Simpson

Third Advisor

Dr. Edward Trembley

Fourth Advisor

Dr. Robert Wertkin


This research is a descriptive study assessing the psychological profiles of female substance abusers, both current abusers and recovering abusers, and female nonusers. The sample for this study consisted of 90 women of low socioeconomic status (SES) between the ages of 18 and 50 from a mid-size city in the north central United States. Thirty women from each of the following groups are used in this study: (a) women who are nonusers, (b) women who are currently abusing drugs and other chemical substances, and (c) women who are recovering from drug use and abuse. This study is important because such research might lead to the development of more accurate treatment interventions for women of low socioeconomic status (SES). All three sample groups (abusers, recovering abusers, and nonusers) completed the following instruments: (a) the Michigan Department of Public Health of Substance Abuse Services Data System, which was chosen for its use in identifying demographic information on women of low socioeconomic status; (b) the Sixteen Personality Factor Questionnaire (16PF Form A) (Cattell, Eber, & Tatsuoka, 1970); and (c) the Rotter Internal- External Locus of Control Scale (Rotter, 1966). Examination of subjects' 16PF scores via a series of separate 3 (abusers vs. recovering abusers vs. nonusers) x 2 (African-Americans vs. White Americans) factorial analysis of variance (ANOVA) yielded no significant differences except for personality Scale 0, Apprehension. On the Rotter, a 3 (abusers vs. recovering abusers vs. nonusers) x 2 (White vs. African-American) factorial ANOVA yielded nonsignificant main effects for group as well as a nonsignificant interaction. The finding from this analysis suggests that low SES women are more prone to guilt, apprehension, self-reproachment, insecurity, worry, and troubled behavior. In addition, this personality factor is associated with acting out behavioral patterns. This finding is consistent with some of the behavior associated with individuals who abuse drugs and alcohol and are chemically dependent.

Access Setting

Dissertation-Open Access