“Jagged Little Pills” (for ‘Times Higher Education’)

“Jagged Little Pills”  by Brian Bloch

My article on the use of artificial stimulants by students (in Germany)

was published today, 04. April 2013 for the Times Higher Education online.

An extract:

Recent research in Germany reveals that one in five students “takes something” to improve academic performance. The substances can range from fairly innocuous caffeine tablets to Ritalin, amphetamines, even cocaine. Critics here are extremely concerned about what they refer to as “pharma- turbo” or “brain doping”.

Students’ motives for all this pill-popping range from staying alert and concentrating better to overcoming nerves, tension and anxiety (many brain dopers reveal neurotic symptoms). However, as an article in the newspaper Die Welt points out, the notion of pills “that make you clever” is just wishful thinking.

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