Background: Nurses are often the first point of contact for patients hospitalized due to alcohol-related causes. Alcohol dependence is highly stigmatized and as a result healthcare professionals often have low behavioural intentions, meaning low willingness to care for these patients. This can have a direct influence on quality of care. Objectives: The purpose of this study was to explore enrolled nursing students' intention to care for patients with alcohol dependence and the antecedents, preliminary factors, that predict this within the Theory of Planned Behaviour; specifically attitudes, subjective norms, self-efficacy and controllability. Design: The study was a cross-sectional survey using the Theory of Planned Behaviour. Setting: Two Technical and Further Education South Australia campuses across metropolitan Adelaide. Participants: n= 86 enrolled nursing students completed the survey (62% response rate). Methods: Enrolled nursing students' intention, attitudes, subjective norms, self-efficacy and controllability were measured using a Theory of Planned Behaviour Questionnaire. The Short Alcohol and Alcohol Problems Perception Questionnaire investigated attitudes in more detail and a short knowledge scale assessed alcohol-related knowledge. Results: Subjective norms and attitudes had a significant, positive effect on intention to care within the final model, accounting for 22.6% of the variance, F2,83=12.12, p<0.001. Subjective norms were the strongest predictor. External factors such as age, previous alcohol training and alcohol-related knowledge held direct paths to antecedents of intention. Conclusions: Subjective norms were the strongest predictor of intention to care for patients with alcohol dependence, followed by attitudes. The study provides an understanding of enrolled nursing students' intention to care for alcohol dependent patients. These findings can assist in developing tailored alcohol training for students, to increase attitudes and foster behavioural change, in order to improve the quality of care for these patients.