An illustration of 3 red plastic cups representing a standard drink of Liquor, Wine, and Beer.

Drawing the Line “Standard Drink”

Not all drinks are equal.

Knowing how much is in your cup, is the first step to knowing your own limits. Each type of alcohol has a different "Standard Drink" amount.

Your perception of how much alcohol is in a “Standard Drink” will likely differ from your friends. 

Be careful not to cross the line when you are pouring a drink.

Here's a quick guide:



Use a shot glass to measure out 43 ml or 1.5 oz of hard liquor (40% alcohol) and add it to your cup (before your ice & mix).

This will help show you what it actually looks like in a glass. Try to use the same "type" of glass for each drink.

Did you know that restaurants have different glass types for a reason? Each glass type is a slightly different size. This helps the server know how much is in your drink. They also use different glasses for non-alcoholic beverages, to help them see who’s not drinking.

Measuring out a drink with shot glass


Before you start drinking (or jumping on the group video chat with friends), take a few minutes and plan out how much you want to drink.

Plan a safe night before you start drinking. Everyone wants to have some fun, but a few simple things can help you:

  • Plan how many or how much you want to drink
  • Plan how much you want to spend $$
  • Plan for a safe ride home (avoid walking alone, use the Safe Walk program at your campus)
    • designated driver (yes, this goes for biking too)
    • cab, ride share, or bus
    • friends couch


Cook yourself a quick meal before you start drinking.

Make sure you eat while you are drinking. Foods that are high in fat and protein can help slow down the absorption rate of alcohol. Your body needs time to process each drink.

60 minutes per drink (so let's just round that up to 90 mins, since sometimes we are drinking more than a measured standard drink.

Alcohol impacts your judgement and ability to make decisions. Avoid that impulsive “take-out” order and pizza chaser by having snacks with you to eat, while you are drinking.

Woman cooking on stove talking on the phone


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