College Freshman Drinking Drops to Historic Low

The proportion of college freshmen in the U.S. who drink beer has dropped from 73.7% in 1982 to 41.2% in 2007.

That's 44% lower in 2007 than in 1982. The level is also the lowest level since tracking began 41 years earlier.

The American Freshman Survey is conducted annually by the Higher Education Research Institute of the University of California at Los Angeles and sponsored by the American Council on Education and the University of California at Los Angeles.

The 2007 survey results are based on the responses of over one-quarter million (272,036) full-time freshman students at 366 baccalaureate-granting colleges and universities across the U.S.

Seven of every ten college students in the U.S. (70.5%) are age 21 or older, according to the National Center for Educational Statistics.



  • Pryor, John H et al. The American Freshman: National Norms for Fall 2007. Los Angeles, CA: Higher Education Research Institute, Graduate School of Education & Information Studies, University of California, Los Angeles, 2008.

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