A trio of researchers at the taxpayer-funded University of Northern Colorado will spend $402,249 on a study investigating how heavy marijuana use by college students affects their academic performance and how hungry they are in terms of academic motivation.
The three-year study involving 150 dazed and confused college students will be funded with a grant from the National Institutes of Health, reports The Denver Post.
The professors behind the study are Kristina Phillips, Michael Phillips and Trent Lalonde. Their objective is to gain an understanding of how getting regularly stoned out of your ever-loving gourd relates to a host of issues including academic performance, academic persistence, depression, anxiety and cravings.
Kristina Phillips and Michael Phillips are both psychology professors. Lalonde is a professor of applied statistics.
The data to be used in the study will be collected by using text messages to ask the 150 students questions in real time. The researchers will also use academic records. It’s not clear how collecting three years of data in this way could cost $402,249.
“One substance-related factor that gets little attention is craving,” a research summary about the study explains, according to the Post. “It is possible that greater marijuana craving could lead to more frequent marijuana use, thus impacting not only the cognitive focus of students but also their motivation for academic work.”
In Colorado, where recreational marijuana use is legal, marijuana is a hot topic.
About 350 public school teachers and officials as well as law enforcement officials convened at a Safe Schools Summit in October to discuss their concerns that large numbers of students are using lots of marijuana. “It’s the No. 1 problem in schools right now,” Lynn Riemer, president of ACT on Drugs, told the Post. (RELATED: Colorado School Officials: Marijuana Is ‘The No. 1 Problem In Schools Right Now’)