The efficacy of the CAGE questions, the Malmö modification of the MAST questionnaire (Mm-MAST) and Skinner's five-item trauma score were used as a part of a larger health questionnaire in a sample of 1,663 female and 707 male first-year university students in Finland. The Mm-MAST correlated well (0.51-0.66) to reported alcohol intake and drinking for intoxication, the correlation (0.30-0.39) to CAGE was not as high but significant (p or = 3 in detecting heavy drinking, defined as a reported consumption of pure ethanol per year of at least 10 kg for women and at least 15 kg for men, was 63.8% and 87.1%, respectively, for female students and 86.3% and 87.4% for male students. Mm-MAST can be recommended as a useful screening tool for heavy drinking and alcohol-related problems in young university students. It is more specific and more sensitive than the CAGE questionnaire in this population. Skinner's trauma score was not useful for the screening of heavy drinking among young university students.