Facts About Drinking at Nebraska

Students drinking socially
How much do you know?

Take this quiz to see how much you know and to review important information about the drinking culture at the university. You'll learn information to share with your student to help correct their misperceptions.


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What is the difference in the number of times per month that first year males and females at Nebraska report drinking?


Males and females drink about the same amount of times per month.

First Year Students at UNL in 2016-2017 Males Females
How many times drank per month 6.08 times 5.14 times
Who drank (at whatever amount per occasion) 55.2% 57.6%
Drinks per occasion in one month 3.35 drinks 2.31 drinks

Similar to trends observed nationally, the difference between male and female drinking patterns continues to decline. In fact, unlike at the turn of the century, in 2016-2017, there was NO statistically significant difference between the percentage of first-year males and females who chose to drink.

However, there was a slight difference between the average number of drinks per occasion, with females drinking less than males in one sitting. When asked, first-year students frequently overestimated the number of times their peers drink alcohol. It is important to note that on average, students reported drinking alcohol on six or fewer days per month.

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First-year male students report engaging in occasional* binge drinking at much higher rates than first-year female students at Nebraska.

*Occasional is defined as 2 or fewer times in the last 2 weeks.


This is false.

First Year Students at UNL in 2016-2017 Males Females
Occasional binge drinking (2 or fewer times in the last 2 weeks) 8.9% 9%
Frequent binge drinking (3 or more times in the last 2 weeks) 11.3% 9.7%

In 2016-2017, occasional binge drinking was almost the same for first-year males and females. This information again shows that the gap between male and female drinking behavior is narrowing in some regards. Males continue to report slightly higher rates of frequent binge drinking than females. Regardless, it is important to emphasize in your conversations with your student that the overwhelming majority of first-year students didn't binge drink in the previous two weeks (80% males; 83% females).

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Engaging in meaningful volunteer activities will ________________ the likelihood of high-risk drinking.


It will decrease the likelihood.

Research supported by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation found that student commitment to volunteering over a 30-day period was positively correlated with reduced levels of high-risk drinking as well with primary and secondary harms.

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Students who were involved in sports during high school are less likely to engage in high-risk drinking at college.


This is false.

While it's unclear why, the fact remains that students who were athletes in high school are more likely to drink in high-risk ways at college.

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Which of the following is the most commonly reported impact of drinking at Nebraska?


Do something one regrets.

Of Nebraska students who reported drinking in the 2007-2009 UNL Omnibus Survey, these were the important impacts.

Results of Drinking
Missed a class 26.6%
Get behind in school work 15.9%
Did something you regretted 33.3%
Forgot where you were/what you did 22.9%
Engaged in unplanned sexual activity 15.5%
Got into trouble with campus or local police 9.1%
Got hurt or injured 16.1%

It's important to talk to your student about some of the problems that can result from drinking. Talk to them about how drinking can put them at risk - legally, physically, academically, and/or socially.

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Drinking is allowed at the university in which of the following places?

Choose all that apply.


Drinking is not allowed at any of them without a permit.

University of Nebraska-Lincoln is a permit-only campus, which means that alcohol is NOT allowed anywhere on campus property at any time EXCEPT when a campus permit has been granted for a specific purpose or activity.

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Students who violate any alcohol policy will be cited and sanctioned according to university policy.


This is true.

In the 2016-2017 academic year, 416 students received Minor in Possession citations.

However, this should not deter an individual from contacting 911 if a friend is overly intoxicated. The Nebraska Good Samaritan Law gives minors limited legal immunity from a MIP (minor in possession) if they are the first person to request help for the intoxicated individual, make a good faith request for emergency medical assistance, remain on the scene until law enforcement and/or medical personnel arrive, and cooperate with officials.

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The Lincoln Police Department (LPD) regularly conducts "Wild Party Patrols" in the community and strictly enforces local laws. LPD will ticket all individuals at a party that are:

  • Guilty of minor in possession,
  • Maintaining a disorderly house,
  • Selling alcohol without a license, and
  • Procuring alcohol to or for minors.


This is true.
  • 91.4% of underage of Nebraska students who drink report drinking at parties, NOT bars. So even though there are 100 bars within a 1-mile radius of campus, those bars card heavily, and underage students rarely visit bars. Freshman students, as well as all other under-aged students, almost exclusively drink at parties in homes and apartments.
  • Students who receive off-campus violations for disorderly house, selling alcohol without a license, and procuring to or for minors are in violation of the university's Student Code of Conduct. Those violations may result in on-campus sanctions in addition to the legal consequences. Local law enforcement reports these violations to Student Conduct & Community Standards.