National Drug Strategy
National Drug Strategy

Australian secondary school students' use of tobacco, alcohol, and over-the-counter and illicit substances in 2011

4.7 Relationship between sources of alcohol, place alcohol is consumed, and drinking behaviour

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Table 4.9 shows, for younger and older students, the average number of drinks consumed per week by the three main sources of alcohol and place of consumption.

Table 4.9: Average number of drinks# consumed per week among younger (12- to 15-year-olds), older (16- to 17-year-olds) and all current drinkers^ by source of alcohol and where alcohol was consumed, Australia, 2011

Average number of drinks per week

Alcohol obtained from:12 to 15 years16 to 17 years12 to 17 years
Parents3.66.15.1
Friends5.05.95.5
Someone else bought it for me7.89.38.9
Where alcohol was consumed:12 to 15 years16 to 17 years12 to 17 years
Home3.35.04.2
Friend’s place5.36.96.4
Party6.38.47.7

# Means are based on unweighted data. Students who indicated they consumed more than 20 drinks on any of the seven days
preceding the survey were excluded from analyses.
^ Current drinkers: students who drank on any of the past seven days.
† Percentages exclude responses from students who reported multiple drinking locations.

Both younger and older current drinkers drank less alcohol per week if they obtained their alcohol from their parents than if they obtained it by having someone else buy it for them (p<0.01).

Among younger students, the average number of drinks consumed was also significantly lower if alcohol was obtained from parents than from friends (p<0.01).

Younger drinkers drank significantly fewer alcoholic drinks per week if they consumed alcohol at home than at a friend’s place or at a party (p<0.01). Older drinkers reported to drink significantly fewer alcoholic drinks per week if they consumed it at home rather than at a party (p<0.01).

The average number of drinks consumed per week by older current drinkers was significantly higher when they drank at a party than at a friend’s place (p<0.01).

The average number of drinks consumed in the past seven days for younger and older students drinking at a party by source of alcohol is shown in Figure 4.1.
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Figure 4.1: The average number of drinks consumed in the past seven days for 12- to 15-year-old current drinkers^ (left) and 16- to 17-year-old current drinkers^ (right) who drank their last drink at a party, by source of alcohol, Australia, 2011#†


Column graph showing the average number of drinks consumed in the past seven days for 12- to 15-year-old current drinkers^ (left) and 16- to 17-year-old current drinkers^ (right) who drank their last drink at a party, by source of alcohol, Australia, 2011Description of Figure 4.1

^ Current drinkers: students who drank on any of the past seven days.
# Means are based on unweighted data. Students who indicated they consumed more than 20 drinks on any of the seven days
preceding the survey were excluded from analyses.
† Percentages exclude responses from students who reported multiple drinking locations.

Among 16 to 17 year-olds, current drinkers consumed significantly fewer drinks when friends supplied the alcohol for the party than those current drinkers who obtained their alcohol for the party by either getting it from their parents or someone else buying it for them (p<0.01). Statistically significant differences were not observed for the younger age group.

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