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Last Updated: Tuesday, 19 June 2007, 09:47 GMT 10:47 UK
Exam students 'rely on Ritalin'
Students claim Ritalin is being used to boost exam performance
Students are taking drugs designed to tackle attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) to improve their exam performance, it has been claimed.

The prescription-only drug Ritalin is being used by Oxford University students to improve their concentration during study, the BBC has been told.

One student, who wanted to remain anonymous, said demand for the drug across the colleges was "so high".

A university spokesman urged stressed students to talk to counsellors.

'Unfair advantage'

Ritalin is given to hyperactive children to improve concentration.

Another student at Oxford told the BBC: "There's quite a few people who do it. If you can get hold of it you are going to do it obviously because it gives you an unfair advantage."

The university spokesman said: "We would strongly advise students against the practise of taking drugs that have not been specifically prescribed to them as this is dangerous and can be illegal.

"Students who are struggling to cope personally or academically, or who have any kind of drug problem, will find a range of support at Oxford.

"They should talk to their tutors, their college welfare officers, the student union, their GP, or the university counselling service."

Last month, Leicester University's director of education Paul Cooper claimed he had anecdotal evidence that parents were giving schoolchildren Ritalin to boost their exam performance.

Ritalin can be used to treat attention deficit disorder

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29 May 07 |  Education
Ritalin prescription fears raised
03 Sep 06 |  Scotland
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21 Jun 07 |  Education

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