Encouraging but limited research indicates that brief motivational interventions may be an effective way to reduce heavy episodic drinking in college students. At 2 campuses, students (83% male) mandated to a substance use prevention program were randomly assigned to 1 of 2 individually administered conditions: (a) a brief motivational interview (BMI; n = 34) or (b) an alcohol education session (AE; n = 30). Students in the BMI condition reported fewer alcohol-related problems than the AE students at 3-and 6-month assessments. Trends toward reductions in number of binge drinking episodes and typical blood alcohol levels were seen in both groups. Process measures confirmed the integrity of both interventions. The findings demonstrate that mandated BMIs can reduce alcohol problems in students referred for alcohol violations.
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