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Safety beliefs and knowledge of cognitive enhancers in UK university students

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posted on 2021-09-13, 18:33 authored by Eleanor Dommett, Timothy Rakow, Ben Gardner, Ngoc Trai Nguyen
Cognitive enhancers (CE) are prescription drugs taken, either without a prescription or at a dose exceeding that which is prescribed, to improve cognitive functions such as concentration, vigilance or memory. Previous research suggests that users believe the drugs to be safer than non-users and that they have sufficient knowledge to judge safety. However, no research had actually compared the information sources used and safety knowledge of users and non-users. This study therefore compared users and non-users of CE in terms of i) their sources of knowledge about the safety of CE and ii) the accuracy of their knowledge of possible adverse effects of a typical cognitive enhancer (modafinil); and iii) how the accuracy of knowledge relates to their safety beliefs. Students (N=148) from King’s College London (UK) completed an anonymous online survey assessing safety beliefs, sources of knowledge and knowledge of the safety of modafinil; and indicated whether they used CE, and, if so, which drug(s).

History

Geospatial coverage

This study was limited to students studying at King’s College London, UK and on full time in person courses and therefore effectively London.

Data collection from date

2017-12-05

Data collection to date

2018-04-23

Language

English

Copyright owner

Eleanor Dommett - King's College London; Timothy Rakow - King's College London; Ben Gardner - King's College London; Ngoc Trai Nguyen - King's College London

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    Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience

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