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Am J Drug Alcohol Abuse. 2013 Sep;39(5):312-9. doi: 10.3109/00952990.2013.770519. Epub 2013 Jun 28.

Do drinking games matter? An examination by game type and gender in a mandated student sample.

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  • 1Department of Psychology, Emmanuel College, Boston, MA 02115, USA.



College students who violate alcohol policies engage in riskier alcohol use and demonstrate more problems related to their use than non-violating peers. Drinking games (DG) have been linked to increased alcohol use and negative consequences.


The present study sought to assess potential differences in DG participation among mandated males and females by examining rates of endorsement, types of DG played, and how types of games are related to alcohol use and related consequences.


Participant data were obtained from 154 undergraduate students mandated to receive an alcohol intervention,


DG players were found to have higher typical and peak blood alcohol concentrations, consume more drinks per week on average, consume more standard drinks per highest drinking occasion, and to experience a considerably greater number of alcohol-related consequences than non-players. Males endorsed greater participation in DG and cited "team" and "motor" games more often than females. "Gambling" games were endorsed equally by both sexes, but resulted in increased consequences for females only.


Engaging in DG results in higher levels of alcohol consumption. The likelihood of consequences experienced may vary by type of DG in which individuals choose to participate, as well as by gender. Results from this study provide information that can be utilized in targeted alcohol programming efforts, not only for a high-risk population such as mandated students, but tailored to the specific needs of males and females.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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