Skip to main content

Drinker’s Check-up

Program Description

Developed in 2001, Drinker's Check-up (DCU) is a self-administered online application designed to help people 1) develop a better understanding of their alcohol drinking habits, including the risks (e.g., health-related problems); 2) consider whether to change their drinking habits to reduce the risks; and 3) consider how to make those changes. The program targets individuals along the continuum of problem drinking from hazardous use (e.g., binge-drinking college students) to alcohol dependence (e.g., individuals presenting for specialized alcohol treatment). DCU is based on the principles of brief motivational interviewing and on an individual’s readiness to change. DCU’s six core elements are captured by the acronym FRAMES: Feedback is personalized, Responsibility for changing is left with the individual, Advice to change is given, a Menu of options for changing is offered, information is provided in an Empathetic style, and Self-efficacy is emphasized. The program consists of integrated assessment, feedback, and decision-making modules. Following the completion of the assessment and feedback modules, users are prompted to review information, complete a second decisional-balance exercise, or consider goals of change and develop a plan for change, depending on the individual’s reported readiness to change.

Program Snapshot
Evidence Ratings
Alcohol Use and Alcohol Use Disorder
Program Contact
Reid K. Hester, Ph.D.
Director, Research Division, Checkup & Choices LLC


Dissemination/Implementation Contact
Reid K. Hester, Ph.D.
Director, Research Division, Checkup & Choices LLC


Program Type
Substance use disorder treatment


18-25 (Young adult)
26-55 (Adult)
55+ (Older adult)

Geographic Locations


American Indian or Alaska Native
Black or African American
Hispanic or Latino

Implementation materials available
Dissemination materials available