49th Meeting of the European Brain and Behaviour Society, Lausanne, Switzerland, 4 - 07 September 2021, pp.259
Introduction: The use of psychostimulant drugs to increase academic success is common among
young people, especially medical students. However, the effect of psychostimulants on academic
success not clear in the current literature.
Materials and Methods: A structured online survey was carried out with 431 undergraduate
students in different faculties of Medicine in Turkey. Comparisons between groups, correlation and
regression analysis about associated variables were made. The academic performance of the
students was evaluated with grade point average (GPA) score. Also, academic success, academic
anxiety, study performance, sleep quality and pharmacological knowledge levels were questioned
with the scale based on self-evaluations.
Results: 23 (5.4%) healthy students reported using psychostimulants to improve academic success.
There was no significant difference in age, gender, semester, objective (GPA score) and subjective
(self-report) assessment of success between users and non-users. But most of the users evaluated
that the psychostimulants are useful. Smoking and increased knowledge level of pharmacology are
risk factors for psychostimulant use.
Conclusion: We could not find a relationship between academic success and pharmacological
cognitive enhancement. Psychostimulant use had an positive effect on self-assessment of students. It
can support the hypothesis that the psychostimulants has a motivational contribution rather than a
purely pharmacological effect. The relationship of psychostimulants with alcohol and smoking should
be examined in detail, and users should be questioned in terms of susceptibility to risky behaviors