Busy students turning to prescription drugs

The drug habits of Australian students will be the focus of new research to determine whether prescription medications such as Ritalin or Adderall are being misused in a bid to enhance academic performance, write Eliza Edwards and Andrew Purcell for The Sydney Morning Herald.

A survey, commissioned by the National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre, will seek information from students across four Australian universities. The findings, due to be released in 2016, will build on the first big study of prescription stimulant misuse at Australian universities, published last year, which found 8% of undergraduate participants had used the drugs in a manner not specified in the approved packaging label.

This research, led by University of New South Wales performance psychologist Jason Mazanov, polled more than 1,700 students at four large south-eastern universities about their use of cognitive enhancers, illicit drugs, caffeine and natural diet supplements. Of the 164 students that reported using prescription amphetamines, about two-thirds said they took them to improve their concentration and ability to focus. One-third said that they took them to "get high" or "enjoy the feeling".
Full report on The Sydney Morning Herald site