Locating Research on Substance Misuse

Much research has been done on the misuse of alcohol, tobacco, and other drugs, its causes, and its prevention. This research can be critical in framing your prevention efforts. Like any existing data, you need to consider whether research comes from a reliable source and whether the research was done using subjects comparable to those in your community. Sources of, and guides to, research on substance misuse include the following:

  • National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA). This site contains resources on alcohol misuse, including a searchable database of more than 130,000 records on alcohol misuse and alcoholism for the period from 1972 through 2003.
  • National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA). NIDA is the federal focal point for research on drug misuse and addiction. The site contains a wide range of material and resources on drug and alcohol misuse, including links to the annual reports of the Monitoring the Future survey (MTF). MTF is a national survey of drug, alcohol, and cigarette use and related attitudes among adolescent students (Volume I) and college students and adults ages 19 to 50 (Volume II). The survey is funded by NIDA and conducted by the University of Michigan.
  • Project CORK. This website is a resource that contains bibliographies, publications, presentations, and a searchable database of 89,000 items on substance misuse, most of which are drawn from the professional literature. The site also contains an annotated list of related websites and a set of current awareness newsletters containing summaries of more than 1,300 substance misuse-related journal articles.
  • ERIC at the Department of Education. ERIC is a database that contains more than one million abstracts of research reports, journal articles, and other publications on education research and practice. These publications include fairly broad and deep coverage of the literature on substance misuse and prevention among school-aged children.
  • PubMed at the National Center for Biotechnology Information. PubMed is a searchable database that contains more than 21 million citations to biomedical literature from MEDLINE (the primary component of PubMed, approximately 90%), life science journals, and online books, often with links to full-text content or publisher’s websites. The subject scope of MEDLINE is biomedicine and health, broadly defined, and includes research from the life and behavioral sciences to provide information needed by health professionals and others engaged in activities related to public health and health policy development, as well as basic research and clinical care. Since 2005, 2,000 to 4,000 references are added to the database each week.

SAMHSA also has prioritized data, outcomes, and quality in an effort to inform policy, measure program impact, and improve quality of services for individuals, families, and communities.

Last Updated: 09/24/2015