Hosts of off-campus college parties drink more and engage in more alcohol-related problem behaviors than their guests, a new study suggests. The researchers found that hosts of on-campus parties tend to drink less than their guests.
Medical News Today reports that hosts of college parties are more likely than their guests to be male, living off campus, members of a Greek organization, in at least their second year of college, and have more money than other students.
The results of the online survey of 3,796 students are published in Addictive Behaviors.
Universities could use the findings to help cut down on excessive drinking at college parties, the researchers note. “Party hosts set the context for the attendees. They decide what kind of drinks are going to be there and how many people are going to attend,” study author Cynthia Buettner of Ohio State University said in a news release. “So if you could get people to think about hosting a party in a particular way, you could reduce the risks for the people who attend.”
Buettner found more than 12 percent of study participants had hosted weekend parties. About 80 percent of the parties were held off-campus. Hosts of off-campus parties had an average of almost nine drinks, compared with seven-and-a-half drinks for guests. In contrast, on-campus party hosts had an average of four-and-a-half drinks, compared with seven-and-a-half drinks for guests.
Hosts of off-campus parties were more likely to be involved in problem behaviors associated with alcohol compared with on-campus party hosts, or with guests of either type of party. These behaviors included arguments, vandalism, public urination, fighting, and driving under the influence.