Belmont University Research Symposium (BURS)

Publication Date



Sciences and Mathematics, College of


Psychological Science, Department of

BURS Faculty Advisor

Dr. Linda Jones

Presentation Type

Oral Presentation


Caffeine is considered a legal drug with a main function of acting as a stimulant. The recommended daily dose of caffeine is up to 400 mg, however, most college students consume on average 800 mg per day (Mcllavian et al., 2013). Amongst American college students, caffeine is considered one of five most commonly consumed drugs, being compared with alcohol, marijuana, opioids, and sedatives (American Addictions Center, 2019). Within this population, there is a lack of knowledge regarding the adverse effects of caffeine and its potential impact of alertness versus sleepiness. Existing literature on this topic has shown that caffeine can decrease overall energy (Young & Benton, 2013). It was found that 53% of college students self-report fatigue and daytime sleepiness (Roth, 2015). Daytime fatigue is shown to negatively impact academic achievement, attention span, decision making, function, and quality of life (2015). This research aimed to understand the relationship between daytime sleepiness and caffeine consumption at a mid-sized southern university, measured by the Epworth Sleepiness Scale (Johns, 1991) and the Caffeine Dependency Inventory (Sabau & Beiglböck, 2020). It was hypothesized to have a positive correlation between caffeine consumption and daytime sleepiness. It is anticipated that those who consume high amounts of caffeinated drinks will show high levels of daytime sleepiness. The results of this study have implications for creating potential interventions in college students to decrease caffeine consumption and increase energy and attention throughout the day.