Harvard School of Public Health College Alcohol Study, 1993 (ICPSR 6577)

Published: Nov 14, 2005

Principal Investigator(s):
Henry Wechsler, Harvard School of Public Health


Version V3

This survey focused on alcohol use and alcohol problems among undergraduate college students. The survey collected information on students' use of alcohol, tobacco, and illicit drugs, views on campus alcohol policies and student alcohol use, reasons for drinking alcohol and reasons for not drinking or limiting drinking, and personal difficulties caused by drinking problems (e.g., missed classes, injury, and trouble with police). Additional topics covered by the survey include overall health status, daily activities, satisfaction with education being received, grade-point average, living arrangements, social life, sexual activity, use of condoms during sexual intercourse, date rape, drunk driving, and attendance in meetings of Alcoholics Anonymous, Alanon, Adult Children of Alcoholics, and Narcotics Anonymous. Background variables include age, height, weight, sex, marital status, religion, mother's and father's education, mother's and father's drinking habits, race, and Hispanic origin.

Wechsler, Henry. Harvard School of Public Health College Alcohol Study, 1993. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 2005-11-14. https://doi.org/10.3886/ICPSR06577.v3

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Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (19547)

As explained in the ICPSR Processing Note in the codebook, variables COLL_ID (college ID number), STUDY_ID (unique respondent identifier), and SERIAL (sequence number within college) are restricted from general dissemination for reasons of confidentiality. Users interested in obtaining these data must complete an Agreement for the Use of Confidential Data, specify the reasons for the request, and obtain IRB approval or notice of exemption for their research. Apply for access to these data through the ICPSR restricted data contract portal, which can be accessed via the study home page.



This study was previously distributed under the title ALCOHOL USE AND ABUSE AMONG AMERICAN COLLEGE STUDENTS, 1993.

This survey is the first round of the Harvard School of Public Health College Alcohol Study. Subsequent rounds were conducted in 1997 (ICPSR 3163), 1999 (ICPSR 3818), and 2001 (ICPSR 4291).

Generated by the SAS CPORT procedure, the SAS transport file comprises the data and a formats catalog with the value labels.

ICPSR did not receive any code descriptions for variable COLL_ID (college ID number). Consequently, individual colleges cannot be identified by name with this variable.

A random sample of students in 140 schools was selected using probability proportionate to size sampling of colleges and universities. However, the data only include the 119 schools in the analytic sample of the 2001 round of the Harvard School of Public Health College Alcohol Study (ICPSR 4291). Of the 120 schools surveyed for the 2001 round, 119 met the response rate cutoff for inclusion in that year's analytical sample. The last ICPSR version of this study (i.e., the second version of ICPSR 6577) only included the 119 schools of the 1999 analytical sample (ICPSR 3818), which were slightly different from the 119 schools in the 2001 analytical sample. In 1999, 119 of the 128 schools surveyed met the response rate cutoff for inclusion in the 1999 analytical sample.

Full-time undergraduate students enrolled in four-year colleges or universities in the United States.

mailback questionnaires

survey data



2005-11-14. The study has been updated with revised data supplied by the principal investigator to allow for comparable analyses with the Harvard School of Public Health College Alcohol Study, 2001 (ICPSR 4291). This version of the data comprises the same 119 schools in the ICPSR 4291 data. Six schools in the previous version were dropped, six schools not in the previous version were added, and seven variables (MMDD, SERIAL, NEWC19_A, NEWC19_B, NEWC19_C, NEWC19_D, and WAVE) were added. In addition, ICPSR revised the documentation accordingly and added a SAS setup file to the collection. The SAS setup includes the PROC FORMAT statements from the previous version.

2003-12-02 The principal investigator supplied a revised data file in which the number of colleges was reduced from 140 to 119 (2,189 cases were dropped). Some variables were removed, others were renamed, and new variables, including a weight variable, were added. In addition, ICPSR has identified 11 variables with one or more revised values (variables DRIVE, NUMPROB, PROBGULP, PROB5, PERSIST, NOBINGE, UPTAKE, GIVEUP, CONTBING, ANYDRUG1, and ANYDRUG2). The documentation and other supporting files were revised accordingly.


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This study is maintained and distributed by the Health and Medical Care Archive (HMCA). HMCA is the official data archive of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.