What do student auditors do for Alcohol Impact?

Tuesday 06-06-2017 - 11:33

Alcohol Impact is all about student wellbeing - so of course, students are a vital part of the programme's auditing process.


Institutions and students’ unions participating in Alcohol Impact are audited by students trained by NUS. We’ve trained 50 so far! Over two days, auditors conduct a review of evidence, verify it, and determine scoring – working in pairs to review each criterion.

As part of the audit, students lead interviews with key programme stakeholders such as the NHS, alcohol-related charities, and the police – who may have supported the programme in the wider community.

Students evaluating Alcohol Impact learn about approaches to responsible alcohol consumption at their institution, gain practical skills in auditing, improve their communication, and gain a valuable addition to their CV. To evidence their experience, auditors are awarded a certificate of completion, a letter of recommendation and a transferable skills document.

NUS runs focus groups with students as part of Alcohol Impact, gathering valuable insight about student drinking behaviours and student opinions on the programme and their institution and students’ union’s approach to alcohol-related work. The focus groups have four concrete aims:

  • To explore student opinions of the drinking culture at university;
  • To find out about influences and impacts of student drinking;
  • To discuss individual drinking behaviours and attitudes;
  • To discuss opinions on initiatives taking place on campus.

We’ve had really positive feedback from students about their auditing experience. Here are some quotes:

"Alcohol Impact is really effective in fostering cross-collaboration and working towards cultural change. The partnership seems to be fully invested in pursuing the accreditation to its highest ambition."

“It’s a great initiative to promote inclusion and change of perceptions and behaviours linked to alcohol consumption which can lead to better relationships for students.

“Alcohol Impact is a very good idea and is such an important issue in universities. Auditing was something I had never heard of but now I have taken part these are skills will help me in the future.”

“I have gained a lot from my experience as an auditor. I have found the experience enlightening and am pleased to hear about the changes the university are trying to make regarding responsible alcohol consumption. I have gained a number of skills such as interviewing skills, as well as giving feedback on specific criteria. These are definitely things I will take away with me for the future.”

“It was good to get the chance to learn about interviewing and then put this into practice. It was a bit scary, but once you get into the interview it was fine and I felt like I have gained skills from the experience. It is very good practice for the future.”

“I valued this as it greatly improved my communication skills (active listening, questioning, highlighting, emphasising) as well as reading skills. It trained me to be attentive to details when verifying the documents and also to keep focused. The training helped me to improve my self-esteem and has given me insight into the role of NUS and Alcohol Impact.”

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