The Principal Investigator

J. Scott Tonigan, PhD

Dr. J. Scott Tonigan, PhD has been continuously supported by the National Institute of Health (NIH) for 33 years, with most of this work funded through the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA). His programmatic research focuses on how, and under what circumstances, people with alcohol problems benefit from participation in mutual help programs and formal treatment.  In this capacity, Dr. Tonigan has conducted numerous naturalistic studies investigating the AA experience and he has over 200 addiction focused publications that summarize his work in many of the largest randomized clinical trials sponsored by the NIAAA: Project MATCH, COMBINE, and REPP  Dr. Tonigan has chaired the NIH Clinical and Treatment Health Services review panel (AA-3), the NIH Loan Repayment Program, the University of New Mexico main campus institutional review board, and numerous boards of addiction journals. Dr. Tonigan is currently the director of the Center on Alcohol, substance Use and Addictions (CASAA) at the University New Mexico.

What we hope to learn

This study is interested in learning more about the daily experiences of people in AA over a six-month period. We are especially interested in how, if at all, AA attendance and prescribed AA practices may be helpful to you.  A description of this clinical trial is available on

What are the benefits of participating in this research?

The information you provide may be useful in understanding how the things you do are helpful in recovering from alcohol problems.  There may be no medical or direct benefit to you as a participant. However, some individuals find the interviews to be helpful to them in evaluating their personal situation.  Information you provide will help us understand how people change their drinking, and what role AA may serve in changing behavior.  This information will have long-term benefits for the treatment of substance abuse.

How you can participate

Eligible participants over 18 years of age will take part in 3 virtual interviews over a 6-month period. You may be asked to complete additional surveys and assessments. For more information about participation, please contact us at 505-510-2640.

To find out if you are eligible to participate take the survey at (note that there is no compensation for completing the online survey)

Is my information confidential?

Our research staff takes every precaution to keep your information safe from accidental breach of confidentiality. We do not share information you give us with anyone outside of the research team. Also, we assign an identification number for labeling all information we collect from you and all electronic records are stored on the University’s secure servers. For more detailed information about our measures to secure your confidentiality, please call us at 505-510-2640.

The study was also granted a certificate of confidentiality form the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Certificates of Confidentiality are issued by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and other HHS agencies to protect identifiable research information from forced or compelled disclosure. For more information on certificates of confidentiality please visit

Do I get paid for my participation?

Eligible study participants will receive compensation for participation in the form of an electronic Amazon gift card. Please note that there is no compensation for completing the on-line survey.

1 Comment

  1. I was interested in this, so I searched to confirm legitimacy, which took me to, which says that participants will have to take a breathalyzer so they have to live near UNM. True, or not true?

    Also confusing whether they want current AA attendees, or if people with past experience might qualify.

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