Gambling Prevalence and Factors Associated with Gambling Participation among University Students in Uganda

Norman David Nsereko, Mark Mohan Kaggwa, Tunde Adebisi, Derrick Ssewanyana, Veronika Basa, Shaila Hussain, Raymond Bernard Kihumuro, Nelson Ssewante, Sulaiman Bbosa

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This paper examines the prevalence of gambling for gain among university students and to gain a theory-based understanding and knowledge of the influence factors of this gambling behaviour based on the University Student Psychosocial Problems Development Theory (USPPDT). Relatively little is known about the factors associated with students’ gambling for financial gain encompassing a student’s biosocial/cultural and psycho characteristics informed by a theory. Participants were recruited from two public and three private universities in Uganda. A total of 1101 randomly selected students participated in the study and 976 (88.6%) completed the survey instruments. The self-reported current prevalence of gambling participation was 281 (28.8%) among university students (≥ 19 years). In agreement with the theory and findings from the study, student demographic characteristics, study program characteristics, student-related health burden characteristics, psychosocial functioning, and antisocial behaviour items were particularly predictive of students’ participation in gambling for financial gain. These risk factors for gambling are not presumed as causation, identifying them points to important implications in terms of prevention and intervention on student gambling behaviour. This points to a considered interplay of different players in designing transversal strategies for a student at risk for gambling.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-16
Number of pages16
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - 15 Jul 2023


  • Gambling
  • Psychosocial Problems
  • Theory
  • Transversal Strategies
  • Students


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