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Member Research & Reports

Member Research & Reports

BU: College Campus Alcohol Policies Show Room for Improvement

About 35 percent of US college students reported binge drinking — consuming five or more drinks on a single occasion — last year, and alcohol contributes to thousands of college student injuries, instances of sexual violence, and death. Substantial research has examined and informed effective policies for preventing alcohol-related problems in the communities surrounding campuses, but on-campus alcohol policies have received little attention.

Now, a new study led by a Boston University School of Public Health (BUSPH) researcher finds that college campus alcohol policies show room for improvement.

The study, published in the journal Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research, demonstrates a new, evidence‐ and expert‐informed assessment approach for campus alcohol policies, and finds that most schools may not be implementing all of the most effective policies.

“Every school has alcohol policies, but they often do not reflect the public health evidence,” says study lead author Dr. David Jernigan, professor of health law, policy & management at BUSPH. “Our assessments can help guide campus leaders toward measures more likely to succeed in ensuring student health and safety.”

Previous systems that researchers have put forward for evaluating campus alcohol policies are fairly subjective, Dr. Jernigan and his colleagues wrote.

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