Honors College Theses

Date

2022

Major

Child and Family Development (B.S.)

Document Type and Release Option

Thesis (open access)

Faculty Mentor

Dr. Trent Maurer

Abstract

The relationship between college students and binge-drinking is a heavily researched and discussed topic. However, with the COVID-19 pandemic a whole new side of the issue is introduced. The impacts of the pandemic on binge drinking episodes, as well as personal desire to binge drink, is valuable data to be analyzed. This capstone project collected data from Georgia Southern students on their drinking habits, as well as how COVID-19 interrupted their social life. Their personal drinking habits were investigated, including how often they find themselves “black-out drinking” and how many drinks they usually consume on a single drinking occasion, as well as what they believe the opinion of their peers on what is acceptable alcohol consumption to be. The survey resulted in every respondent listing the maximum number of drinks they consider to be acceptable to drink as less than what they believe their peers considered acceptable. Additionally, 44% of respondents reported that their desire to drink when school moved online due to the COVID-19 pandemic, while only 8% reported their desire decreased. Some common themes in reasoning for this change in actual consumption included students feeling like they had missed out on too much during isolation due to the pandemic, and drinking as a coping mechanism to deal with stress and depression that came about as a result of COVID-19. These results and more revealed interesting implications regarding social norms and the effects of limited social interaction on those internalized norms.

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