The Effects and Risk of Alcohol Related Injury and Violence

This study will examine the effects of college binge drinking on alcohol-related injury and violence. The researcher will employ qualitative methods including the use of a case study of two groups of students attending two universities to examine the effects of binge drinking on student attitudes, perceptions, susceptibility to injury and violence. Specifically, the study will employ the use of a survey questionnaire and the use of the Health Belief Model to assess student’s perceptions of collegiate binge drinking and its negative effects on participants and the public.


Each day in the news new stories is published regarding the negative or deleterious effects of collegiate drinking. Studies suggest that college drinking, particularly binge drinking, is on the rise in universities around the nation, despite recent stories of the deaths of innocent college students resulting from over-imbibing. The purpose of this research paper will be an examination of the effects of college binge drinking and analysis of the risk of alcohol-related injuries and violence associated with college binge drinking. Specifically the researcher will attempt to answer the following questions: (1) how does binge drinking affect student perceptions and moods, (2) does binge drinking increase alcohol-related injuries to drinkers and non drinkers, (3) who is most at risk for injury related to binge drinking and (4) what types of violence are most likely to result from college binge drinking. To answer these questions the researcher will conduct a comprehensive literature review combined with a qualitative study on the effects of binge drinking and perceptions college students have of binge drinking on campus.

  Significance of Study.

Studies confirm that binge drinking is on the rise on college campuses, increasing as much as 7% in recent years (Wolburg, 2001). Binge drinking results in mental impairment, mood alterations, increased food consumption and often violence and other negative behaviors (Wolburn, 2001)Other negative effects associated with binge drinking may include unsafe sexual practices, sexual assaults, arrests, driving under the influence and poor academic performance (Wolburg, 2001).

Background to Study.

Many studies have associated negative consequences with collegiate binge drinking; these studies confirm violence, sexual assault and vandalism are more prevalent among binge drinkers than non binge drinkers (Wiatrowski, Griswold & Roberts, 1981; Abbey, 1991; Clark et. al, 1999). Binge drinking involves consuming more than five drinks in a limited period of time (Haines & Spear, 1996) and is considered common in the college population, affecting up to 44 percent of student respondents (Clark, et. al, 1999).

Clark, Durkin & Wolfe (1999) conduct a research study examining the influence of social bond variables on college binge drinking. The study involved the distribution of a questionnaire to binge drinkers. The results of the study suggest that multiple predictors for binge drinking exist including conventional belief systems, student GPA and respect for authority (p. 450).

This study will utilize a comprehensive literature review to provide background information regarding the effects of college binge drinking on students and non-students. In addition, the researcher will engage in field research in the form of a qualitative case study to analyze the effects of binge drinking and the perceptions students have of the effects of binge drinking related to violence and alcohol-related injury.

Multiple models exist for examining the effects of ‘risky’ behavior including college binge drinking. Wolburg (2001) points out man examples including the Health Belief Model, the Protection Motivation Theory, and the Extended Parallel Process Model (p. 23). This study will use the Health Belief Model as a tool for determining what actions are necessary to encourage college students to control binge drinking.

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