University of Minnesota

Alcohol & College Life Course

The Need for the Alcohol & College Life Course

College is about getting students ready for the future – not just their careers, but the choices and responsibilities of developing a social and family life. College courses tend to only address career development, and students are left to figure out much of the rest on their own.

Unfortunately, many factors work against students’ success, including unhealthy habits and unsafe alcohol use. Risky behaviors around alcohol use are not new on college campuses. College administrators rank college drinking as one of the major issues and concerns they address on a daily basis.

Frequency of Use on College Campuses

According to the most recent survey findings of 27,774 college students from the American College Health Association National College Health Assessment (2011):

  • 62% students reported drinking alcoholic beverages within the last 30 days
  • 76% reported drinking alcohol at some point in their lives
  • 31.5% of students reported drinking five or more drinks in a sitting at least once within the previous two weeks

At the same time, while 24% of students reported never having consumed alcohol, the belief among surveyed students was that only 3.8% of students have never consumed alcohol.

Encouraging Safe Practices

The high frequency of use, combined with the disparity between actual and perceived use, demonstrates a need for alcohol education that dispels myths about actual usage statistics, encourages safe practices for those who do choose to use, and increases support for those who choose to abstain. Alcohol & College Life covers these topics and more to help college students successfully navigate their environment and experience.

Lesson Topics:

  • Alcohol
  • Social norms
  • Harm reduction, party skills
  • Balancing social life and academics
  • Study skills
  • Time management
  • Getting involved
  • Interpersonal Relationships
  • Sex and Drinking
  • Psychology of Intoxication
  • Pharmacology
  • Legal Issues
  • Tobacco
  • Marijuana
  • Warning signs and intervention
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  • Last modified on January 5, 2016