Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Education (MSEd)


Health Science


Alcoholic consumption is an expected social norm on college campuses across the nation. In 1971, a report by the US Department of Health, Education, and Welfare stated that alcohol consumption was the number one drug problem in America. According to student survey data gathered at the time, between 71-96% of college students reported drinking. This thesis project studies the reasons for student drinking and abstinence in the late 1970’s on a New York State college campus. Research study statistics, based on data current to the study era, were considered by means of resident director and student surveys and observation. Survey questions on the reasons for drinking ranged from social customs and peer pressure to dealing with crisis or disappointments. Survey questions on the reasons for abstaining from drinking included health concerns, religious beliefs, bad past experiences, and school sport expectations. Quantity and frequency of drinking was also measured based on age, gender, and college level. Conclusions drawn suggest further study of the entire student body beyond the residence hall students would allow greater understanding of the scope of the issue, as well as the formation of an alcohol education committee to help raise awareness of the potential concerns for this type of student behavior.


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