Home > Clinical question: Does information on alcohol use in one's peer group affect drinking habits in university and college students?

Vincent, E Chris [The Cochrane Library] . (2016) Clinical question: Does information on alcohol use in one's peer group affect drinking habits in university and college students? London: Wiley. Cochrane Clinical Answers

URL: https://www.cochranelibrary.com/cca/doi/10.1002/cc...

Low to moderate‐quality evidence indicates that social norming information (feedback on alcohol use compared with peers) has little to no effect on the drinking habits and alcohol‐related consequences in college and university students.

Randomized controlled trials including over 40,000 students (mean age 19 years; 56% women) evaluated the effects of subject‐specific feedback on alcohol‐related behaviors. Feedback was given in a variety of formats and compared with no feedback or general alcohol‐related education. Students received personal information comparing their drinking behaviors with those of their peers, delivered electronically (computer or Internet), by mail, via marketing campaigns, or in group or individual face‐to‐face sessions. The outcomes were measured four or more months after the norming interventions, and none of the methods produced clinically meaningful changes in alcohol‐related problems (e.g. legal difficulties, risky behavior, illicit drug use, and injuries), binge drinking, alcohol quantity and frequency, or estimated blood alcohol content. In subgroup analyses some interventions did demonstrate a statistically significant difference between groups, but the differences were small and clinically meaningless.


Item Type:Evidence resource
Publication Type:Guideline
Drug Type:Alcohol
Intervention Type:AOD disorder, AOD prevention, AOD disorder harm reduction
Source:The Cochrane Library
Date:26 February 2016
Publisher:Wiley
Place of Publication:London
EndNote:View
Subjects:A Substance use, abuse, and dependence > Prevalence > Substance use behaviour > Alcohol consumption
B Substances > Alcohol
J Health care, prevention and rehabilitation > Prevention approach > Prevention through information and education
J Health care, prevention and rehabilitation > Health related prevention > Health information and education > Health promotion
J Health care, prevention and rehabilitation > Patient care management
L Social psychology and related concepts > Interpersonal interaction and group dynamics > Peer relations > Level of drugs and alcohol use among peers
N Communication, information and education > Information use and impact
N Communication, information and education > Educational environment (school / college) > Student behaviour and participation
N Communication, information and education > Educational level > Undergraduate or graduate level
N Communication, information and education > Recommendations or guidelines > Practice / clinical guidelines
T Demographic characteristics > Undergraduate or graduate student

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