Defense Date


Graduation Date

Summer 8-9-2021


One-year Embargo

Submission Type


Degree Name





School of Nursing

Committee Chair

Melanie Turk

Committee Member

Richard Zoucha

Committee Member

Maria Cooper


young adults, vape, e-cigarettes, culture


Introduction: Vaping, the act of inhaling an aerosolized liquid, is associated with health risks. The 18- to 25-year-old age group has the highest rate of vaping among adults. Understanding culturally held values, beliefs, and experiences associated with the behavior of vaping in young adults may uncover the social mechanisms that underpin vaping initiation and influence continued use. The purpose of this study was to explore and understand the cultural values and beliefs about vaping among young adults. Method: The method used for this study was a focused ethnography. Young adults who currently vape nicotine (N=24) were recruited via snowball method and self-referral. . Semi-structured interviews were conducted via audio-recording and Zoom online video recording and transcribed into NVivo 12 software. Leininger's four phases of qualitative data analysis guided the concurrent data collection and analysis. Data were collected and analyzed until saturation of data occurred. Results: Twenty-four categories and seven patterns were identified; subsequently three themes emerged from the data: 1) Individual and group values influence how vapers engage in community, 2) Vapers identify a scope of health effects, concerns, and nicotine addiction, 3) Vaping is a mechanism for self-calming and coping with internal and external pressures. Discussion: This study indicated a culture of vaping among young adults with its own beliefs, values, shared language, and norms. Implications of this study suggest that understanding cultural cues that influence behavior is critical to culturally competent care at primary and population levels. Culturally congruent interventions at primary, secondary, and tertiary levels are necessary to curb use.



Additional Citations

Tremblay, B., Turk, M.T., Cooper, M.R., Zoucha, R., (July 30, 2020). Knowledge, Attitudes, and Perceptions of Young Adults About Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems in the United States, The Journal of Cardiovascular Nursing Volume Volume Publish Ahead of Print doi: 10.1097/JCN.0000000000000731,_Attitudes,_and_Perceptions_of_Young.99251.aspx

Included in

Nursing Commons