"It Breaks the Ice": A Qualitative Examination of Drinking Game Motives, Harms and Protective Behavioral Strategies among University Students in Australia

Amanda M George, Byron L Zamboanga, Brett Scholz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)
30 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Background: Most research on drinking games (DG) behaviors and cognitions has been conducted among university students from the United States. Understanding why DGs are played, consequences and protective behavioral strategies (PBS) to reduce negative consequences is needed among Australian students. Objectives: In Australia, five focus groups (n=3-8) were held with 27 university students (63% female) aged 18-24 years who had played a DG in the past month. The study aimed to identify motives for playing DGs, consequences and adoption of PBS. Results: Four themes were identified: (1) social lubrication and conformity: playing to fit in; (2) community and camaraderie (perceived social benefits of DGs); (3) a means to an end (where getting drunk/predrinking was the goal and avoidance of PBS was prevalent); and (4) it is not a levelled playing field, which highlights that the risks are not equal for everyone. Conclusions: The interplay between DG motives, PBS and associated harms was identified. Expanding measurement of pre-existing DG motives and PBS is recommended, as well as the potential of DG motives to inform proposed interventions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)419-427
Number of pages9
JournalSubstance Use and Misuse
Volume58
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 23 Jan 2023

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of '"It Breaks the Ice": A Qualitative Examination of Drinking Game Motives, Harms and Protective Behavioral Strategies among University Students in Australia'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this