Academic journal article Journal of Alcohol & Drug Education

College Drinking

Academic journal article Journal of Alcohol & Drug Education

College Drinking

Article excerpt

To form a research-based view of drinking among college students, many researchers rely on five key national sources of data. The five data sets are:

1. The Harvard School of Public Health College Alcohol Study (CAS);

2. The Core Institute (CORE), Southern Illinois University;

3. Monitoring the Future (MTF), University of Michigan;

4. The National College Health Risk Behavior Survey (NCHRBS), Youth Risk Behavioral Surveillance, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) (unlike the others, this is not ongoing); and

5. The National Household Survey on Drug Abuse (NHSDA), Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).

In addition to these five resources, there are other valuable data sources. All add to the knowledge base on drinking among college students.

What are some of the drinking trends among college students?

* Although approximately equal percentages of male and female college students consume alcohol, consumption is generally heavier for males than for females (O'Malley & Johnston, 2002).

* The data show that rates of binge drinking are highest for White college students. African-American students are lowest on measures of binge drinking, and Hispanic students fall between the two groups (O'Malley & Johnston, 2002).

* In a recent study, 31 percent of students met criteria for a diagnosis of alcohol abuse and 6 percent for alcohol dependence in the past 12 months (Knight et al., 2002).

* After alcohol, tobacco is the most frequently used substance among college students; about 31 percent of college students have smoked a cigarette in the past 30 days. About 20 percent are current marijuana users, and about 1 percent use cocaine (O'Malley & Johnston, 2002).

Drinking Games

In many college environments, drinking is less expensive than other forms of entertainment. …

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