Drinking and university students: From celebration to inebriation

Ann M. Roche, Kerrianne Watt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

60 Citations (Scopus)


There is extensive anecdotal information and considerable interest in the levels and patterns of drinking among university students in Australia. However, few empirical data exist. As a result, a survey was undertaken of students attending the three major universities in the southeast corner of Queensland. Two hundred and nine male and 191 female students, aged 17-25 years, completed a 30-item survey designed to assess prevalence and patterns of alcohol consumption, associated harms and students' alcohol-related attitudes. Nearly all (94%) students drank and many drank very heavily. Approximately half the male students and one-fifth of female students reported drinking to intoxication once or more per week. Consumption of five or more standard drinks on a typical drinking occasion was reported by 54% of students. Overall, more than two-thirds (69%) of the sample reported drinking at hazardous or harmful levels. About one-third of the sample reported experiencing an alcohol-related accident or injury within the last 12 months. Despite this, 62% of students did not believe that a reduction in student drinking was necessary. In addition to examining information on alcohol-related attitudes and behaviour, this survey identified several groups particularly at risk.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)389-399
Number of pages11
JournalDrug and Alcohol Review
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1999
Externally publishedYes


  • Alcohol consumption
  • Alcohol-related harms
  • Patterns
  • Prevalence
  • Tertiary students


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