Under Construction: Alcohol and the teenage Brain

  • Alcohol and the teenage brain
  • Alcohol and the teenage brain
Targeted Drugs:

This resource has undergone expert review.

Year 7–8, Year 9–10
Time Allocated

Partial lesson (under 45mins)







Eastern Health, Turning Point, State Government Victoria.


Video length: 4:28

This award-winning animation discusses adolescent brain development and highlights the effects of alcohol and risky drinking on different brain regions, as well as its impact on behaviour. It presents complex and up-to-date neurobiological research in a way that is engaging and relevant for teenagers.

Expected Benefits

  • Increased knowledge of alcohol-related effects and harms.

Evidence Base

Expert Review*:
A finalist in the international 2012 ATOM Awards, which honour multimedia achievements, this superb resource features original animations aimed towards teenagers. It presents scientific research on alcohol’s interaction with complex brain areas and processes in a simple and engaging way. Creative animation demonstrates the function of different brain regions (including the cerebellum, hippocampus, frontal and temporal lobes, hypothalamus, and brain stem) and shows how alcohol interferes with these processes. This allows students to understand how alcohol affects multiple brain structures and their associated cognitive or behavioural effect. The video also explains why the adolescent brain is especially vulnerable to both the short- and long-term effects of alcohol and touches on social repercussions which are particularly salient to the target audience. This video has the potential to be included in either a Science or PDHPE context; however we note that it omits a number of Alcohol and other Drug items in the Years 7-10 PDHPE curriculum such as assertive decision-making and support-seeking.

*Review provided by researchers at the Matilda Centre for Research in Mental Health and Substance Use at the University of Sydney.

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