National Meeting on Alcohol, Other Drug, and Violence Prevention in Higher Education
H. Wesley Perkins, Ph.D. and David W. Craig, Ph.D.
October 14-17, 2000


As the social norms approach has been shown to be one of the most effective strategies for reducing student alcohol abuse, many questions about its application have also emerged. This workshop will explore several current topics of concern to researchers and prevention program professionals who are employing social norms strategies in campus populations. In particular, the following questions will be considered along with others raised by participants: 1) Can social norms approaches be used on campuses where actual heavy drinking is quite pervasive or where data show the majority as high risk drinkers? 2) Does it matter if the actual and perceived norms one measures are injunctive or descriptive? 3) How can electronic multimedia be employed to strengthen traditional social norms marketing? 4) Should evaluation studies of social norms campaigns analyze data at the individual or aggregate level?


Perkins, H. W. (1997). College student misperceptions of alcohol and other drug norms among peers: Exploring causes, consequences, and implication for prevention programs. In Designing Alcohol and Other Drug Prevention Programs in Higher Education. The Higher Education Center for Alcohol and Other Drug Prevention, U.S. Department of Education.

Perkins, H. W., Meilman, P.W., Leichliter, J.S., Cashin, J.S., & Presley, C.A. (1999). Misperceptions of the norms for the frequency of alcohol and other drug use on college campuses. Journal of American College Health 47, 253-258.

Perkins, H. W., & Wechsler, H. (1996). Variation in perceived college drinking norms and its impact on alcohol abuse: A nationwide study. Journal of Drug Issues, 26(4), 961-974.

page last modified: 4/17/2000