Does Drinking During College Lead to Lower Grades?

college drinkingA trio of economists sought the answer to a question just about everyone else has known for a long time: Will getting drunk a lot while you're in college perhaps impact your academic performance?

Their paper, "Does Drinking Impair College Performance? Evidence from a Regression Discontinuity Approach," concludes that "drinking causes significant reductions in academic performance, particularly for the highest-performing students. This suggests that the negative consequences of alcohol consumption extend beyond the narrow segment of the population at risk of more severe, low-frequency, outcomes."

The researchers looked at the drinking patterns and academic performance of 3,884 students at the United States Air Force Academy.

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By contrast, there is quite a bit of evidence to suggest that working during college does not impact academic performance.

The solution? Have your kid get a part-time job while he's in school. That way he'll have less time for drinking -- and he can use the money to help graduate debt-free!

Zac Bissonnette'sDebt-Free U: How I Paid For An Outstanding College Education Without Loans, Scholarships, Or Mooching Off My Parentswas called "best and most troubling book ever about the college admissions process" by The Washington Post.
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