Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



First Advisor

Randall K. Filer

Second Advisor

Monica Deza

Academic Program Adviser

Randall K. Filer


This masters’ thesis aims to examine the impact of the legalization of marijuana for recreational use on the death toll from opioid misuse in the state of Colorado. This investigation was done using the Synthetic Controls Method via data collected primarily from the CDC and IPUMS databases. The results indicate that the 2012 legalization policy in Colorado appears to reduce the number of deaths due to opioid overdoses.



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