Influence of Peer Domain Factors on Substance Use among Female Students at the Nairobi and Thika Campuses of KMTC


  • Cerina Atieno Ouma Africa Nazarene University Kenya



Peer Domain Factors, Substance Use, Female Students, KMTC, Nairobi, Thika Campuses


World drug report indicates growing accessibility to substances as a major world trend among ages 15 to 65 years.  Globally, the use of substances by college students of all genders is a challenge and a public health concern. However, many studies on substance use focus on male students. This study had the purpose of assessing the influence of peer domain factors on substance use among female students at Thika and Nairobi campuses of Kenya Medical Training College (KMTC). The study adopted the ecological systems theory. Explanatory sequential mixed methods design (two-phase model) was used to collect quantitative data from participants on the subject; this was followed by the collection of qualitative data through an interview guide to get in-depth insight to help in explaining and elaborating the information gathered from the survey. The study population was 2474 female students. The study used stratified random sampling to select a sample of 344 respondents. Data from female students were gathered using semi-structured questionnaires and an interview guide. The data from the questionnaire were analyzed using descriptive statistics (frequency distributions, means, and percentages). Additionally, inferential statistics, correlation, and regression analysis were used to test the relationships between the study variables, while data from interviews were subjected to thematic analysis. The emergent findings were used to reinforce the findings from questionnaires. The study results show that that peer domain factors had a significant negative influence on substance use among the female students at KMTC (β= 0.787; p = 0.000). In this regard, the similarity between peers is critical in influencing behavior. Therefore, having peers who do not use substances and having peers who disapprove of substance use is expected to lead to protecting female students from engaging in substance use. The study recommends that KMTC need to implement extensive substance prevention programs targeting female students to reduce risk factors associated with substance use. The preventive programs include guidance and counseling, peer counseling and mentorship programs and, advocacy campaigns. The interviews added that there was a need to establish and finance advocacy programs backed by social media to enhance the dissemination of information on the negative influence of substance use.


. WHO. (2016). The health and social effects of nonmedical cannabis use. Geneva: World Health Organization.

. American Psychiatric Association. (2013). Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorder (5th Ed.). Washington: American Psychiatric Association.

. Davis, S., & Spillman, S. (2011). Reasons for Drug Abstention: A Study of Drug Use and Resilience. Journal of psychoactive drugs, 43(1), 14-19.

. UNODC. (2017). World Drug Report 2017. Vienna: UNODC.

. Blume, S. (2012). Understanding addiction disorders in women. In A. Graham, T. Schultz, & V. Wilford (Eds.), Principles of Addiction Medicine (Vol. 2, pp. 1173- 1190). American Society of Addiction Medicine: Chevy Chase, MD.

. Hodder, R. K., Freund, M., Bowman, J., Wolfenden, L., Gillham, K., Dray, J., & Wiggers, J. (2016). Association between adolescent tobacco, alcohol and illicit drug use and individual and environmental resilience protective factors. Disease in Childhood, 6(11), 54-67.

. NACADA. (2012). Rapid situation assessment of the status of drug and substance abuse in Kenya. Nairobi: NACADA.

. Muriungi, S. K., Ndetei, D. M., Karanja, J., & Matheka, C. W. (2013). Alcohol and substance abuse risk among students at the Kenya Medical Training College. Mental Health and Substance Use, 7(2), 125-133.

. Kabiru, C. W., Beguy, D., Ndugwa, R. P., Zulu, F. M., & Jessor, R. (2012). Making it”: Understanding adolescent resilience in two informal settlements (slums) in Nairobi, Kenya. Child and Youth Services, 33(1), 12-32.

. Gathumbi, D. (2013). Prevalence of substance use among students in a Kenyan University: a preliminary report. East African Medical Journal, 76(1), 301-306.

. Catalano, M., Miller, V., & Hawkins, D. (2012). Ambiguity in black drinking norms: An ethnohistorical interpretation. In a. A. In Bennett L. (Ed.). New York: Plenum Press.

. Brown, G., Johnston, L., Patrick, M., O'Malley, & Jerald, G. (2010). Monitoring the Future National Results on Adolescent Drug Use: Overview of Key Findings. Available from; online

. Bronfenbrenner, U. (1977). Toward an experimental ecology of human development. American Psychologist, 32(1), 513-531.

. Bronfenbrenner, U. (1979). The ecology of human development: Experiments by nature and design. Cambridge: Harvard University Press.

. Bronfenbrenner, U. (1986). Recent advances in research on the ecology of human development. In R. Silbereisen, K. Eyferth, & G. Rudinger (Eds.), Development as action in context: Problem behaviour and normal youth development (p. 1). New York: Springer.

. Paquette, D., & Ryan, J. (2011). Bronfenbrenner’s Ecological Systems Theory. Human Ecology, 39(2), 16-20.

. Pandian, R. D., & Lakshmana, G. (2017). Risk and resilience factors for substance use among street adolescents: Assessment and development of an integrative model. Asian Social Work and Policy Review, 11(3), 216-233.

. VicHealth. (2015). Current theories relating to resilience and young people: a literature review. Melbourne: Victorian Health Promotion Foundation.

. Parry, S. (2014). Drug use prevention among young people: A review of reviews. London: National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence.

. Collings, P., & Magojo, S. (2015). Risk and resilience factors for substance use among street adolescents: Assessment and development of an integrative model. Asian Social Work and Policy Review, 11(3), 216-233.

. Jason, T. (2011). Adolescent Drug Abuse in Kenya: Impact on Reproductive Health. Nairobi: New World Printers.

. Kobasa, P. (2013). Cannabis use before age 15 and subsequent executive functioning. British Journal of Psychiatry, 198(6), 442-447.

. Eggun, H., & Vaughan, L. (2014). What predicts psychological resilience after disaster? The role of demographics, resources, and life stress. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 75(5), 671-682.

. Bernard, A. (2014). Personal characteristics and resilience and its consequences: conceptual issues and empirical illustrations. Journal of Personality, 77(6), 1645-1676.

. Search Institute. (2011). The prevention of substance use, risk and harm in Australia: A review of the evidence. Perth: Search Institute.

. Henderson, S. (2013). A review of 25 long-term adolescent tobacco and other drug use prevention program evaluations. Preventive Medicine, 37(1), 451-474.

. Good, P., & McKay, B. (2012). Interventions to reduce the harm associated with adolescent substance use. An international review. Lancet, 369(1), 1391-1401.

. Bot, A. (2015). A feminist approach to substance abuse treatment and service delivery. Social Work in Health Care, 19(3-4), 67-83.

. Nicolas, J. (2011). Research Design: Qualitative, Quantitative and Mixed Approaches (2nd Ed.). Thousand Oaks: Sage.

. Yamane, T. (1967). Statistics: An Introductory Analysis (2nd Ed.). New York: Harper and Row.

. Cooper, D., & Schindler, P. (2011). Business Research Methods (11th Ed.). New York: McGraw-Hill Education.

. WHO. (2010). WHO-ASSIST V3.0. Geneva: WHO.

. Mugenda, A. G., & Mugenda, O. M. (2012). Research methods: Qualitative and qualitative approaches. Nairobi: ACTS Press.




How to Cite

Cerina Atieno Ouma. (2021). Influence of Peer Domain Factors on Substance Use among Female Students at the Nairobi and Thika Campuses of KMTC . International Journal of Advances in Scientific Research and Engineering (IJASRE), ISSN:2454-8006, 7(9), 70–85.