Date of Award

2008

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Health Science Honours

Faculty

Faculty of Computing, Health and Science

First Advisor

Jill Darby

Second Advisor

Dr Shelley Beatty

Abstract

Australian young adults aged 17-25 years old attending university are more likely to drink at levels which put themselves at risk of both short and long term alcohol-related harm. University settings are an appropriate place to target university students with alcohol education or awareness-raising campaigns. Australian research on this topic is relatively limited. This mixed methods study involved two phases. The first phase quantitatively evaluated the impact of the 'Enough is Enough' campaign, implemented by the North Metropolitan Community Drug Service Team at ECU Joondalup, on students' awareness of the consequences of excessive alcohol use and perceived acceptability of drunkenness. The second phase qualitatively explored how to actively engage university students in alcohol education or awareness-raising campaigns. In phase one, a convenience sample of students from the ECU Joondalup Student Village completed 48 pre-test and 55 post-test questionnaires. In phase two a convenience sample of five students were interviewed using a semi-structured format. Phase one results showed an increased recognition and perceived appropriateness of the 'Enough is Enough' campaign at ECU Joondalup. There was, however, no significant change in the respondents' perceived acceptability of drunkenness. While there was an increase in respondents' awareness of the consequences of excessive alcohol use, this increase could be attributed to the non-matching of pre- and post-test samples. Phase two revealed students preferred holistic strategies rather than singular approaches, and harm reduction education rather than abstinence based approaches. Using technology, incentives, promotional resources, activities, student volunteers and appropriate locations to enable students' participation were reported to be important. Barriers to student's participation were the Australian drinking culture, time commitments, passive advertising and the on-campus alcohol policy. The study provided more understanding on alcohol awareness campaigns in university settings. More published Australian research in university settings is required.

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