Incidence, change from pre-college drinking, role of peer group, academic & criminal problems, social aspects, colleges’ responses, alcohol education.
The tradition of college drinking has developed into a kind of culture, involved in every level of a college students’ environment. Customs handed down through generations of college drinkers reinforces students’ expectation that alcohol is a necessary ingredient for social success. These beliefs and expectations exert a powerful influence over students’ behavior toward alcohol. Heavy drinking is interwoven throughout the culture of the institutions. As a result, students perceive this drinking pattern as the social norm rather than as an unhealthy and destructive behavior. Customs that promote college drinking are seen in many activities throughout a students’ environment, whether they drink or not.