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Abstract

The present study investigated the relationship between measures of gambling and the process of probability discounting in a sample of participants from a population that has historically shown high rates of gambling problems. Thirty nine American Indian university students complete the South Oaks Gambling Screen, the Gambling Functional Assessment – Revised, and a probability-discounting task involving two monetary and two non-monetary outcomes. Consistent with results from previous research focusing on majority-population participants, severity of gambling problems was more strongly associated with endorsing gambling as an escape than with gambling for positive reinforcement. Endorsing gambling as an escape, but not for positive reinforcement, was also a significant predictor of discounting the monetary outcomes. Specifically, greater endorsement of escape predicted greater tendencies toward risk taking. Neither subscale predicted discounting of the non-monetary outcomes. The results potentially inform researchers about the relationship between measures of gambling behavior and the process of discounting, as well as factors that influence the gambling behavior of American Indians.

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