Social Smoking by University of California, Santa Cruz Students

  • Mike Males University of California, Santa Cruz


While many health interests worry about persistently high rates of cigarette smoking among college students, little research has tracked qualitative changes in student habits such as “social smoking.” A survey of 670 University of California, Santa Cruz, undergraduate students ages 18-43, mean age 20.6, found 57% of the weighted sample smoked cigarettes in the past year, compared to 37% of college undergraduates nationally and 34% of UCSC students’ parents. However, two-thirds of UCSC student smokers smoke socially (less than daily), compared to 60% of student smokers nationally and 16% of parent smokers. Half of UCSC social smokers report smoking less than an entire cigarette per occasion and 70% report smoking less today than in the past; the fraction who smoke heavily tend to have parents who smoke heavily. Students’ reports indicating their social smoking is an equilibrium behavior unlikely to lead to heavier smoking need longitudinal investigation.
How to Cite
Males, M. (2007). Social Smoking by University of California, Santa Cruz Students. Californian Journal of Health Promotion, 5(1), 9-13.