The more alcohol a person consumes, the more likely he or she is to experience negative consequences. Binge drinking has a significant impact on college students' academic performance, social relationships, risk taking behaviors, and health. Binge drinking is defined as:
- a pattern of drinking alcohol that brings blood alcohol concentration (BAC) to 0.08 gram-percent or above. For a typical adult, this pattern corresponds to consuming 5 or more drinks (male), or 4 or more drinks (female), in about 2 hours.
While few heavy-drinking college students view their alcohol use as excessive or potentially problemmatic, half of those who are frequent binge drinkers - three or more times in a two-week period - report experiencing five or more negative consequences related to an incident (Wechsler and Nelson, 2008).
Nationally, binge drinking rates appear to be declining.
Alcohol abstention rates are increasing among college students and other 18-24 year olds. (Monitoring the Future National Survey 1975-2009). Abstention is defined as:
- no alcohol use in past 30 days
Among First Year Students
Fall 2012. UC Berkeley first year students continue to drink at rates lower than the national average. We have more non-drinkers and fewer high risk drinkers (shown in graph below).
Last revised: July 2013