Date of Award




Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Department of Psychology


Clinical Psychology

Content Description

1 online resource (viii, 92 pages) : illustrations.

Dissertation/Thesis Chair

Edelgard Wulfert

Committee Members

Elana Gordis, Robert Rosellini


Cigarette smoking, Gambling, Gamblers, Cigarette smokers

Subject Categories

Clinical Psychology


A large number of problem gamblers also smoke cigarettes, and data suggest that gamblers who smoke may be prone to experience more problems than non-smoking gamblers, including higher severity of gambling problems and stronger urges to gamble. Given such mounting evidence, an improved understanding of this relationship is greatly needed. The theory of cross-domain cue reactivity may account for this relationship. This theory posits that repeated pairings of cigarette and gambling cues result in these cues acquiring conditioned stimulus properties that elicit cravings for the immediate as well as the associated substance. Thus, the sight of someone smoking may induce thoughts about gambling and the sight of gambling stimuli may elicit urges to smoke. The present study sought to be the first of its kind to test this theory by measuring physiological reactions (i.e., skin conductance levels, heart rate, and respiratory sinus arrythmia levels) and subjective urges to smoke and gamble during exposure to poker, smoking, and neutral cues in a sample of 76 participants consisting of smokers, poker players, and smoking poker players. Findings support the notion of cross domain cue reactivity as it applies to smoking and gambling. Consistent with this theory, smoking gamblers showed greater subjective and objective reactivity to smoking and gambling cues than did those who only smoked and only gambled. Implications for these findings and future directions are discussed.