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Results of Student Health Status Survey

A total of 328 students completed the survey, with a response rate of 9.4%. The 2006 survey had a 12% response rate (n=1798). The detailed results are shown below:

  1. Demographics
    1. Respondents were 68% female and 31% male.
    2. Age
    3. Class Standing
      Graduate Student2%
      Don't Know
    4. Ethnicity
      American Indian/Alaskan Native1.5%
      African American/Black3.7%
      Pacific Islander0.5%
      Other Non-White3%

General Information:

Respondents reported that they receive their health information from multiple sources. Their medical provider, the Internet and their family members were the most common sources of information. As compared to ACHA-NCHA 2007, the leading three sources of health information were parents, Internet, and friends.

Many students reported having health insurance (76%) and about 55% reported never using the Student Health Services. ACHA-NCHA 2007 results indicated that about 84% of student respondents had health insurance.


Exercise and Body Weight:

About 32% of student respondents reported exercising 3 or more times per week, which is below the recommended amount by the President's Council on Physical Fitness (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2008). The federal government recommends that adults exercise a minimum of about one hour, five days of the week. This should be moderate aerobic exercise. According to the National Center for Health Statistics (2006), about 31% of adults engage in regular exercise.

Respondents reported being told by their doctor that they were obese or overweight, were about 5% and 19%, respectively. The majority have been told they were within normal range (69%) and 5% were told they were underweight. Body Mass Index was not calculated due to Americans with Disability Act requirements that our survey not ask open ended questions (Section 508 Compliance). Students who identified as overweight (23%) was only slightly more than those reporting a doctor had told them this information (19%). Most students felt that they were within normal range for their body weight.

Most respondents (71%) reported attempting to manage their weight in the last 12 months. Joining a gym and portion control were the most common methods for weight management. Using diet pills (4.7%), fasting (4.9%), vomiting (2.2%), and using a weight management program (2%) were other methods students reported. It appears that most respondents use appropriate weight control methods.


Tobacco Use:

Most respondents indicated that they identified themselves as a non-smoker (80%). About 9% identified themselves as a former smoker, occasional smoker/social smoker (6%), regular smoker (4%), and heavy smoker (1%). According to the ACHA-NCHA 2007 survey results, about 64% of respondents reported being non-smokers.

For those who reported smoking cigarettes, about 37% chose self-help as a technique they would prefer for cessation. Social support (18%), pharmacological interventions (18%), and aversion (2%) were the other categories reported. About 11% indicated that they were not interested in quitting and 14% refused to answer to answer the question.

Non-smokers were asked how many hours they were in the same room with someone who is smoking tobacco. The majority of respondents indicated that the question was not applicable (53%) or zero to 2 hours per day (43%). A small amount reported that they were in the same room more than 3 hours per day (3%).


Alcohol Use:

What is the average number of alcoholic drinks that you consume per week?

Non 34%, Less than 2 drinks 35%, 2 to 5 drinks 18%, 6 to 10 drinks 7%, 11 to 15 drinks 4%, More than 15 drinks, refuse to answer 0%

According to the ACHA-NCHA 2007 survey, about 18.6% of respondents reported never having used alcohol. This study illustrated that about 34% of CSULB students were non-drinkers

During the past 30 days, on how many days did you have 5 or more drinks of alcohol in a row that were within a couple of hours?

0 days 42%, 1-2 days 33%, 3-5 days 12%, 6-9 days 7%, 10 or more days 4%, Don't know 1%, refuse to answer 0%

The majority of respondents stated reported no negative experiences due to their alcohol use in the last 30 days (59%). About 33% reported negative experiences 1 to 2 times in the last 30 days. Comparable data from the ACHA-NCHA 2007 study does not correlate to questions asked in this survey.

Most students indicated that they had not driven their car while under the influence from alcohol consumption in the last 12 months (57%). About 24% reported driving their car 1 to 2 times, 9% reported driving their car 3 to 4 times, 4% indicated 5 to 9 times, and 4% stated 10 or more times in the last year. Approximately 2% refused to answer the question.

Many respondents reported that they use a designated driver (73%), 20% did not use a designated driver, 5% didn't know, and 2% refused to answer the question.

The majority of students (96%) reported never being arrested for a DUI or DWI; however, 2% reported one time, and 1% reported 2 to 3 times.

During the last time the respondent had sexual intercourse, most did not use alcohol or drugs beforehand (67%). About 17% had used drugs or alcohol before sex, and 15% reported never having had sex.

During the past 12 months, how many times have you ridden in a car with a drunk driver?

Never 70%, 1-2 times, 20%, 3-4 times 5%, 5-9 times 1%, 10 or more times 2%, Refuse to answer 1% Top

Drug Use:

About 19% of students reported never using drugs, 6% reported that they don't use drugs, and 41% reported zero drugs in the last year. However 12% reported drug use 1 to 2 times, 5% reported 3 to 4 times, 3% reported 5 to 9 times, 12% reported 10 or more times in the last year.

According to the ACHA-NCHA 2007 study, 63.9% of respondents reported never having used marijuana, 92.2% never having used amphetamines, 92.8% never having used cocaine, and 95.1% never having used ecstasy.

What drugs have you ever used in the past?

Marijuana 30.9%, Ecstasy 7.3%, Cocain 7.7%, Methamphetamine 3.9%, Inhalents 4.7%, Hallucinogens 7.5%, Prescriptions Drugs 12.2%, Heroin 0.2%, No drugs ever used 25.7%

During the past 30 days, what drugs have you used?

Marijuana 15.1%, Ecstasy 1.4%, Cocaine 2.9%, Inhalants 0.6%, Hallucinogens 0.9%, Refuse 5.7%, No drugs in 30 days 73.4% Top

Sexual Behaviors:

The majority (82%) of respondents reported having had sex (oral, anal or vaginal). Seventeen percent reported never having had sex and 2% refused to answer the question.

The majority of our respondents have been sexually active in the past 12 months (88%). About 11% reported not being sexually active within the last year and 1% refused to answer the question.

Many students (62%) reported sexual debut from 16 to 18 years old, 11% reported less than 15 years, 10% reported 19 to 21 years, 6% reported over age 22, and 2% refused to answer.

How many partners have you had sex with since becoming sexually active?

1 50%, 2-5 36%, 6-10 15%, 11-15 5%, more than 15 12%, refuse to answer 1%

Are your sex partners:

Same as your sex5%
Opposite of your sex89%
Both sexes4%
Refuse to answer1%

Describe your last sex partner:

A stranger1%
A casual acquaintance7%
Exclusive dating partner58%
Fiancé/spouse/domestic partner20%
Refuse to answer2%

Safer sex practices were reported always with all partners by 52% of respondents, 30% reported usually, 6% reported rarely, 7% reported never and 5% refused to answer.

What safer sex practices do you use to protect yourself from HIV and/or STDs?

Condoms 45.8%, Dental Dams 0.8%, Monogamous 37.0%, Abstinence 6.5%, Other 3.0%, Nothing 6.8%, Refuse 0.2%

The last time the respondents had sex half (50%) reported that they did not use a condom and/or dental dam. About 47% reported using a condom, 1% reported that they did not know, and 2% refused to answer.

What birth control methods do you currently use to prevent pregnancy?

Abstinence 9%, Birth Control Pills 26.1%, Condoms 37.4%, Diaphragm 0.5%, Nuva Ring 2.5%, Spermicide 2.3%, Withdrawel 9.8%, Nothing 5.8%, Sterilization 1%, Natural Family Planning 0.3%, Other 2.5%, IUD 0.5%, Patch 0.5%, Refuse birth control 1.8%

Condoms and birth control pills are the favored methods of pregnancy prevention. This outcome is very similar to the ACHA-NCHA 2007 study, except that CSULB respondents reported less birth control use in comparison (38.4% vs. 26.1%). Condom use was about equal. Other was given as an option; however, due to the limitations of the ADA Section 508 policy, we could not determine what other methods of birth control were used.

The majority (79%) of respondents reported not using emergency contraceptives (Plan B) in the last year, 13% reported that they have used Plan B, 2% reported not knowing, 5% reported not being sexually active, 1% refused to answer the question.

Many students (56%) reported being tested for sexually transmitted infections; however, only 38% indicated that they have tested for HIV.


Cancer Prevention

Only 10% of men performed self testicular exam on a monthly basis. About 32% reported that they have never performed a TSE. Only 20% of women performed a monthly breast self examination. Female students who have never performed a BSE accounted for 26% of respondents. These outcomes illustrate the need for further cancer prevention promotion programming for the SHS and HRC.


Abuse and Assault

Within the last school year, have you been in a relationship that was:

Emotionally abusive8.7%
Physically abusive1.5%
Sexually abusive0.6%
Not abusive86.9%
Refuse to answer2.4%

Within the last school year, have you experienced the following:

Verbal threats1.3%
Sexual touching against your will4.5%
Attempted penetration against your will2.4%
Sexual penetration against your will0.9%
Have not experienced any of the above89.2%
Refuse to answer1.5%

In comparison to ACHA-NCHA 2007 study results, our survey respondents reported less sexual assault and abuse.


Stress & Mental Health

On a scale from 1 to 10, with 1 being not effective at all to 10 being very effective, how would you rate your ability to manage stress in the past 30 days?

1 2%, 2 3%, 3 4%, 4%, 4 10%, 5 15%, 6 11%, 7 16%, 8 21%, 9 12%, 10 5%, Refuse to answer 0%

Students generally stated that they handle stress relatively well.

On a scale from 1 to 10, with 1 being not stressed at all to 10 being very stressed, how would you rate your stress in the past 30 days?

1 2%, 2 2%, 3 5%, 4 5%, 5 11%, 6 13%, 7 20%, 8 21%, 9 12%, 10 8%, Refuse to answer 8%

The majority of respondents (95%) reported that they did not take medications for mental or emotional issues (e.g., depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, etc.).



  • The average days of exercise for our respondents was almost the same as for the general U.S. population; however, with only 32% exercising more than 3 times per week, this does not meet disease prevention standards. As part of ACHA recommendation, promoting fitness on campus is an important part of reducing chronic disease in our students.

  • Results indicate that alcohol consumption among most students is less than 5 drinks on average per week. However, due to the reported 56% engaging in binge drinking behaviors, the continued need for alcohol education and enforcement is critical.

  • Additionally, the reported 43% who have driven under the influence of alcohol in the last year would also raise concern that more education should continue in this arena.

  • Condom use and birth control pills are favored methods for pregnancy prevention. Safer sex practices are used; however, there appears to be discordance in the data. Further investigation into the reasons for this may be appropriate.

  • STI testing is greater (56%) than the national average of only 44%; which indicates that students are concerned about this matter (American Social Health Association, 2006).

  • Reported HIV testing is less (38%) than the national average of 55% (Kaiser Family Foundation, 2008).



  • Since students receive much of their health information from websites, advertising our “Health Topics” would be advantageous.

  • Advertise smoking cessation services or program referrals.

  • Provide information about healthy weight management techniques.

  • Share results with Recreation and Wellness department for further development of their programs.

  • Collaborative website links and poster displays may be helpful for students to find ways to increase their exercise.

  • SHS/HRC should promote fitness with the Recreation & Wellness departments for chronic disease prevention.

  • Advertise pharmacy prices for condoms and emergency contraceptives.

  • Share results with CaPS regarding mental health, stress and medication use.

  • Offer stress reduction activities or events in collaboration with CaPS or advertise their programs in the clinic.

  • Social norms posters and/or advertising should be developed to address binge drinking and drug use.

  • Health promotion activities and/or advertising regarding BSE and TSE for cancer prevention.



  • Sample size was small (<10% of campus population)

  • Response rate was low (9.4%).

  • Responses may not be accurate due to dishonest answering (mistrust of study design - online survey).


Recommendations for Future Studies:

Outcomes shared with:

  • CQMI Team

  • Executive Team

  • Vice President of Student Services

  • SHS staff



American College Health Association. (2008). American College Health Association-National College Health Assessment Spring 2007 Reference Group Data Report (Abridged). Journal of American College Health , 56 (5), 469-479.

American Social Health Association. (2006, October 9). STD Statistics Fast Facts. Retrieved December 16, 2008, from Learn about STIs/STDs:

Kaiser Family Foundation. (2008, October). HIV Testing in the United States. Retrieved December 16, 2008, from Kaiser Family Foundation:

National Center for Health Statistics. (2006). FaStats. Retrieved December 15, 2008, from Exercise/Physical Activity:

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. (2008, October 7). At a Glance: A Fact Sheet for Professionals. Retrieved December 15, 2008, from Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans: