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Women holding pints of alcohol

Over two-thirds of students drinking hazardously

UCC research calls for action to be taken


Written by Maire Rowland and posted in health


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Women are now drinking as much as their male counterparts according to results of a study by UCC into the harzardous alcohol consumption of students. This has prompted calls for a national debate on Ireland's drinking culture as it highlights the hazardous consumption of alcohol among students compared to general population. The study was undertaken in University College Cork and involved 2,225 undergraduate students.

Results of the research

According to the report:

  • Overall 66.4% of students surveyed reported hazardous alcohol consumption.
  • 65.2% of men surveyed drank hazardously.
  • 67.3% of women surveyed drank hazardously.
  • 17 % of men and 5% of women were consuming more than six units of alcohol at least 4 times per week.

A unit of alcohol is any drink that contains 10 grams of pure alcohol, here are some examples:

  • A pub measure of spirits
  • A small glass of wine
  • A half pint of normal beer
  • An alcopop (275ml bottle)

How does harzadous drinking affect students?

  • Hazardous alcohol consumption can drastically affect a student's performance in university, leading to missing days in college and so affecting their academic performance.
  • According to the results of the report, men who reported to drink harzardously were more likely to report getting into a fight or have a 'one night stand' than women.

What needs to be done?

In light of the results from this research, UCC calls for an end to alcohol sponsorship of sport in Ireland and a minimum unit price for alcohol. The college has introduced some innovative and progressive methods in order to encourage a responsible drinking lifestyle on its campus:

  • It offers alcohol-free accomodation on campus for students, there has been an increase in applications for this facility over the past year.
  • The college also teaches an educational and behavioural change module called e-PUBB UCC to students. 13,000 students have completed this module over the past five years.
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Published February 3rd, 2015
Last updated October 27th, 2015
Tags alcohol college health
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