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Results and Recommendations
from theTask Force on College Drinking

Fred Donodeo, M.P.A
National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism
Jesuit Association of Student Personnel Administrators
March 19 , 2005

NIAAA: Bringing Science to the Field

Lead federal agency for research on the causes, consequences, prevention, and treatment of alcohol abuse, alcoholism, and alcohol problems

Responsible for 90% of U.S. research in this area

Disseminate research findings to scientists, practitioners, policy makers, and public (urging adoption of science-based information)

NIAAA Task Force on College Drinking

Chairs: Rev. Edward Malloy (Notre Dame) and Dr. Mark Goldman (South Florida)

college presidents

Timeframe: 1998 – 2002

Task Force Roster:

Rev. Edward Malloy, Notre Dame (co-chair)
Tomas Arciniega, Cal. State Bakersfield
Robert Carothers, URI
John Casteen, UVA
Edward Foote, U of Miami
Michael Hooker, UNC Chapel Hill
William Jenkins, LSU
William Kirwan, Ohio State
James Lyons, Cal. State Dominguez Hills
Susan Resneck Pierce, U. of Puget Sound
Judith Ramaley, U of Vermont

Task Force Roster:
Researchers and Practitioners

Mark Goldman, USF (co-chair)
Marilyn Aguirre-Molina, Columbia U.
David Anderson, George Mason
Michael Fleming, Wisc-Madison
Bill DeJong, HEC
Ellen Gold, Eastern Michigan
Ralph Hingson, BU
Harold Holder, PIRE
Patrick Johnson, CASA, Columbia
Donald Kenkel, Cornell
G. Alan Marlatt, U of Washington
Marcus Rothschild, VA Med. Cntr
Robert Saltz, PIRE
Kenneth Sher, U of Missouri
Henry Wechsler, Harvard
Sharon Wilsnack, U. of North Dakota
Robert Zucker, U of Michigan

NIAAA Task Force on College Drinking

Why created?

Increased Public and NIAAA concern

Congressional Inquiries

Gaps in Research

Need to provide science-based information to colleges

Bring research to the forefront of the discussion


Source of new, comprehensive analysis and data on extent of the problem

Science-based recommendations to presidents and administrators

Science-based recommendations to NIAAA and the research community

Encourage all stakeholders to embrace rigorous methodology and research-based solutions; assist with new initiatives

Why was this task force unique?

First project of such length (3 years) involving presidents and researchers who deliberated to reach their conclusions

First NIH report on college drinking to offer recommendations based on a comprehensive review of the research literature

First report to offer tiered, research-based recommendations to presidents and staff

Offers a comprehensive research agenda to address gaps in knowledge

Planning and Evaluation Handbook

Results and Recommendations

Snapshot of College Drinking Consequences
(all statistics are annual)

  • Death: 1,400 Alcohol-Related Unintentional Injury Deaths
  • Injury: 500,000 unintentional injuries
  • Assault: 600,000 assaults
  • Sexual Abuse: 70,000 victims of sexual assault
  • Unsafe sex: 400,000 had unprotected sex; 100,000 too intoxicated to give consent
  • Drunk Driving: 2.1 Million Drove Under the Influence
  • Academic problems: 25% report negative academic consequences

Other relevant trends

Students who drink most include:



Members of fraternities and sororities


Some first year students

Schools where excessive drinking is more likely to occur:

Greek systems dominate

Athletic teams are prominent

Schools in Northeast

Schools where excessive drinking is least likely to occur:

2-year institutions

Religious schools

Commuter schools



The 3-in-1 Framework -- “a useful introduction to encourage presidents, administrators, college prevention specialists, students, and community members to think in a broad and comprehensive fashion about college drinking”

Individuals, including at-risk or alcohol-dependent drinkers

Student body as a whole

College and surrounding community


Tier 1 Evidence of Effectiveness Among College Students

Tier 2 : Evidence of Success With General Populations That Could Be Applied to College Environments

Tier 3 : Evidence of Logical and Theoretical Promise, But Require More Comprehensive Evaluation

Tier 4: Evidence of Ineffectiveness

Tier 1

Combining cognitive-behavioral skills with norms clarification and motivational enhancement interventions

Brief motivational enhancement interventions

Challenging alcohol expectancies

Tier 2

Increased enforcement of minimum drinking age laws

Implementation, increased publicity, and enforcement of other laws to reduce alcohol-impaired driving

Restrictions on alcohol retail outlet density

Increased prices and excise taxes

Responsible beverage service policies

Formation of campus and community coalition involving all major stakeholders (for implementation)

Tier 3

Adopting and evaluating promising campus-based policies and practices, such as:

Friday classes and exam

Expanded alcohol-free late night student activities

Eliminating keg parties where underage drinking is prevalent

Alcohol-free dormitories

Older, salaried resident assistants

Controlling or eliminating alcohol at sports events; prohibiting tailgating parties that model heavy alcohol use

Refusing sponsorship gifts from alcohol industry

Banning alcohol on campus, including at faculty and alumni events

Increasing enforcement at campus-based events that promote drinking

Increasing publicity about enforcement of underage drinking laws on campus and eliminating “mixed messages”

Consistently enforcing disciplinary actions associated with policy violations

Conducting marketing campaigns to correct student misperceptions about alcohol use

Provision of “safe rides” program

Regulation of happy hours and sales

Informing new students and parents about alcohol policies and penalties before arrival and during orientation periods

Tier 4

Informational, knowledge-based, or values clarification interventions about alcohol and problems associated with excessive use, when used alone

Providing blood alcohol content feedback


Problems associated with abusive and underage college drinking are more widespread than previously recognized

NIAAA report and conclusions are not an end, but a beginning – we want to continue to be a resource for information and research

Provide the foundation for science, rather than anecdote, to guide college drinking prevention efforts

On-going Products and Activities

NIAAA College Drinking Web site

Orientation Fact Sheet

New College Bulletin

Regional Workshops

Curriculum for Campus Health Care Providers

NIAAA Rapid Response Grant Program

NIAAA College Web site

Full reports

Online alcohol policies

Interactive body

New expanded parents section coming soon

Continued popularity: 21 million hits to date, and growing each month (Feb. 05: 1.2 million hits)

Orientation Fact Sheet

Excerpts from Task Force Report

Focus on first 6 weeks

Media Release 2003– 2.7 million impressions

Univ. Rhode Island – 2004 Orientation

For more information on printing with your logo, contact Fred Donodeo at NIAAA

An important update:
New College Bulletin

New Statistics

New Definition of Binge Drinking

New Discussion of Alcohol Poisoning

New Chart of Drinking Patterns during Freshman Year

Updates on NIAAA’s “Rapid Response” Grant Program and “Underage Steering Committee”

Regional Workshops

Wake Forest (North Carolina)

U. of Puget Sound (multi-state)

Many in conjunction with HEC statewide coalitions

More to come…..

Curriculum for Campus Health Care Providers

For campus-based health clinics

Identify and treat students either at risk for, or having, alcohol problems

4 modules:

Epidemiology and Prevention

Screening and Assessment

Brief Interventions

Motivational Interviewing

Continued Support for Research

Rapid Response Grants

“Investigator-initiated” Grants

NB: Loyola Marymount and Fordham

For materials and more information:


NIAAA College Task Force Publications Catalog


Fred Donodeo

Historical document
Last reviewed: 9/23/2005

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