Brief Alcohol Screening and Intervention for College Students

Academic semester hours: Monday – Friday, 8:30 a.m. – 5 p.m.BASICS helps you explore your alcohol and drug use in a non-judgmental environment. The program’s goal is to reduce risky behavior and the harmful consequences of alcohol abuse.

Phone: (413) 577-5071
BASICS is located on the third floor of UHS, in Room 348.


Who is BASICS for?

BASICS is a “drinker’s checkup” that helps you examine your use, identify changes that could work for you and reduce your risk of future problems. It’s not therapy or substance abuse treatment.

Any student who's concerned about their alcohol or other drug use can choose to attend BASICS. Students who violate UMass Amherst’s alcohol and drug policies, those who are medically transported, held in protective custody or are court-sanctioned are required to attend BASICS. 

What happens in BASICS?

In BASICS, you'll complete an online assessment, creating a personalized profile of your use. Prevention specialists will talk with you about these results, helping you identify consequences of your choices and explore ways to reduce risks.

How long is BASICS?

BASICS has three levels. The level you attend depends on the number of times you've been mandated or referred to the program. BASICS 1 and 2 consist of two 50-minute sessions with a prevention specialist; BASICS 3 involves three sessions. All are scheduled about two weeks apart.

How do I make an appointment?

If you’re mandated to attend BASICS, you'll receive an e-mail with instructions on scheduling your appointment online. If you want to take part on your own, or need assistance scheduling your appointment, call (413) 577-5071, Monday – Friday, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Is there a cost?

That depends on why you’re using BASICS. If you’re coming in on your own, or are referred by a medical or mental health provider, the program is free. Mandated students attending BASICS 1 pay a $100 fee; the fee for BASICS 2 is $175; the fee for BASICS 3 is $175. 

If you miss your appointment or reschedule your appointment with less than 24 hours advance notice, you'll be assessed a $10 no-show fee.

BASICS accepts cash, UCard, checks and Visa / Mastercard credit and debit cards.

Will anyone know I've used BASICS?

Your work online and with the prevention specialists is private.

Where did BASICS come from?

UMass Amherst’s BASICS program is based on research conducted at the University of Washington and was launched using a three-year grant through the federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.