Alcohol consumption among university students in the British Isles

university student drinkingSo it feels like we’ve hit pretty much every other demographic from young person to older people except university students.  So to the left is the university drinking league table for 2015 where they quizzed 1,649 UK university students via an online survey, asking all about your drinking habits and attitudes towards alcohol.  And here is the research paper that looks at university student drinking from a research and academic point of view!  My current university it seems is 46th on the list out of 50.

Abstract

Background

Alcohol is a leading cause of global suffering. Europe reports the uppermost volume of alcohol consumption in the world, with Ireland and the United Kingdom reporting the highest levels of binge drinking and drunkenness. Levels of consumption are elevated among university students. Thus, this literature review aims to summarise the current research on alcohol consumption among university students in the Republic of Ireland and the United Kingdom.

Methods

MEDLINE, CINAHL, EMBASE and PsychInfo were systematically searched for literature from January 2002 until December 2014. Each database was searched using the following search pillars: alcohol, university student, Ireland or the United Kingdom and prevalence studies.

Results

Two thousand one hundred twenty eight articles were retrieved from electronic database searching. These were title searched for relevance. 113 full texts were retrieved and assessed for eligibility. Of these, 29 articles were deemed to meet inclusion criteria for the review. Almost two thirds of students reported a hazardous alcohol consumption score on the AUDIT scale. Over 20 % reported alcohol problems over their lifetime using CAGE while over 20 % exceed sensible limits each week. Noteworthy is the narrowing of the gender gap throughout the past decade.

Conclusion

This is the first review to investigate consumption patterns of university students in Ireland and the United Kingdom. A range of sampling strategies and screening tools are employed in alcohol research which preclude comparability. The current review provides an overview of consumption patterns to guide policy development.

To read the full paper go here: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4759952/

Edited to add: for anyone who missed the excellent Louis Theroux  documentary Drinking to Oblivion last night on BBC 2 it’s showing on iPlayer for the next 29 days here:

Drinking to Oblivion

No link has gone up on Youtube yet but as soon as it does I’ll share it here for my non UK based readers 🙂

Edited to add 30th Sept 2017:

Are universities failing to act on heavy drinking?

 

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