Ms. Sherlock is conducting four research projects which concern the use of
Ecstasy at the Department of Psychology, University of Leeds.
"My first study is a wide scale questionnaire examining various
determinants of drug use. The main body of the questionnaire encompasses
questions to do with; demographics, consumption variables, knowledge about
drugs, as well as attitudes and beliefs about drug use." These survey forms
have been distributed to 6,000 16-25 year olds. She hopes to follow up some
of the respondents after a year to assess changes in answers.
"My second study is a series of semi-structured in depth interviews with
young women drug users. In this I hope to gain some more qualitative data
to supplement the quantitative data acquired in the questionnaire. I am
interested in reasons for; starting, continuing and cessation of use,
positive aspects of use and health related aspects of usage." Results will
be analysed in two ways: first a very simple content analysis; the second
according to the Leeds Attritional Coding System which relies heavily on
Attribution Theory. Again, it is hoped to do a 12-month follow up. "I would
like to administer a scale such as the Brown and Harris Events scale to see
what role life events play in drug use."
The third study is a Behavioural Validation Study consisting of two
components: a group testing of 40 subjects and a longitudinal study of 10
of these. "This involves the subject giving a sample of urine after taking
an Ecstasy tablet and then completing a detailed questionnaire about the
effects, what other drugs they have taken etc." There will be an attempt to
match behavioural effects with the drugs found in the urine.
"My fourth study is still very much in the planning stages. I am hoping to
work in conjunction with Dr. John Blundell from this dept. who did some
preliminary work with Dr. McCann and Ricaurte on Ecstasy, eating and
serotonin levels. We are hoping to conduct something similar on eating
behaviours, probably in questionnaire format."