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National Study of Substance Use Trends among NCAA College Student-Athletes

As part of the NCAA’s charge to enhance student-athlete well-being and protect the integrity of intercollegiate athletics, the research staff periodically assembles a trends report on student-athlete substance use patterns.

The quadrennial report helps inform NCAA policy-makers with both current and historical information concerning levels of student-athlete drug and alcohol use. The studies also analyze why student-athletes do or do not use specific substances, when they started to use drugs, and their attitudes regarding drug use and drug testing.

Studies have been conducted since 1985, but changes in the survey methodology make the reports in 2013, 2009 and 2005 the most useful for comparison purposes. The 2013 study garnered responses from approximately 21,000 student-athletes who answered questions about the following:

  • Information on sport participation, academic performance and other general demographic information
  • Use of and experience with various substances
  • Attitudes toward drug testing
  • Substance use and sources of information
  • Prescription drugs and dietary supplements

For questions regarding the survey instrument or the study procedures, contact Markie Rexroat at 317/917-9644 or mrexroat@ncaa.org. For questions related to Institutional Review Board issues or survey administration issues, contact Michael Miranda at 317/917-6304 or mmiranda@ncaa.org.