What's Happening

Check out what our people and partners are researching, thinking, reading, writing, watching and doing! (Note: The opinions expressed are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of ETR as an agency.)


Situational Leadership: Awareness and Productivity
September 2, 2016

Situational Leadership: Awareness and Productivity

By BA Laris, MPH | September 2, 2016
Research Associate, ETR

The other day I was part of a group text that made me want to laugh, cry, celebrate and scream all at the same time. My 19-year-old son had shared a photo of his first day in his biology lecture hall. He included an estranged family member. I had once told him I wished this person was more integrated into “normal” family exchanges.

Once again, I found that my son has the uncanny ability to push me to grow and accept, challenge myself, and live my principles—more than any other person I have ever met personally or professionally.

And that brings me right to the point of this post: situational leadership.

Really Short Webinar: Situational Leadership
  • 15 Minutes in Focus series on diversity and inclusion in the workplace.
  • Thursday, September 8, 11:00-11:15 am PDT: Moving Beyond Static Leadership Styles: Making Conscious Decisions About Leading From a Strategic Perspective. Register here.
  • Check out our schedule, sign up for upcoming events and listen to archived webinars here.
By B.A. Laris MPH
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Tags: Community Impact Solutions Project, Leadership, Webinar, Parenting
"But Those Teens Don't Look Like Us": Adapting Video Content for Evidence-Based Programs
August 31, 2016

"But Those Teens Don't Look Like Us": Adapting Video Content for Evidence-Based Programs

By Joan Singson and Suzanne Schrag | August 31, 2016
Program Manager and Editor/Product Manager, ETR

Do you like stories? Most people do, and, like Peter Seller’s character in Being There, “We like to watch.” Many of the evidence-based programs (EBPs) being used across the country, including many that ETR distributes, incorporate DVDs. Videos can be a useful and engaging strategy to hold participants’ attention, encourage fruitful discussions and allow youth to personalize information by relating to the characters’ stories and situations.

One of the most frequent questions we get concerning program adaptations relates to videos—in particular, whether videos can be left out or replaced with other videos. Often the question arises when facilitators do not think the included videos are representative of the youth they serve.

By Joan Singson
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Tags: Evidence-based interventions, Adaptation, Videos
Youth Who Puzzle Us: Recent Work in Neuroscience Explains Why
August 29, 2016

Youth Who Puzzle Us: Recent Work in Neuroscience Explains Why

By Vignetta Charles, PhD | August 29, 2016
Chief Science Officer, ETR

Do you work with adolescents? Have you ever faced situations like these?

Sofia is an excellent student, popular on campus and a delightful member of your peer health educator program. She knows everything about birth control, STI prevention and making smart choices. She loves educating her peers. She and her boyfriend come to see you one afternoon and tell you they are pregnant.

Webinar: Survive or Thrive? Re-Envisioning Adolescent Success

We recently collaborated with the California School Based Health Alliance on a webinar describing and applying the new insights in developmental neuroscience. Our goal is to re-think and re-envision how we educate, raise and care for young people on their path to lifelong health and wellbeing. You can find links to the webinar recording and slides ("Survive or Thrive? Using Neuroscience to Re-Envision Adolescent Success") and information about other upcoming CSBHA webinars here.

By Vignetta Charles, PhD
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Tags: Neurodevelopment, Neuroscience, Teens, Risk reduction
Including LGBTQ Youth in Pregnancy Prevention: How to Make It Work
August 25, 2016

Including LGBTQ Youth in Pregnancy Prevention: How to Make It Work

By Cassidey Streber, MA | August 25, 2016
Program Coordinator, Youth Services of Tulsa, Adolescent Health/PregNOT

A student I’ll call Shay came in and sat at the back of my classroom. It was the first class meeting. Other students came bounding in, adding a bit of lively chaos to the mix.

I surveyed the students as they settled and we got started. I took note of Shay in particular. Shoulders up. Sighing. Arms crossed. Uncrossed. Looking out the window. Scribbling on a piece of paper. Not interacting with other students. Not looking at me. Not really there.

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Tags: Inclusive education, LGBTQ youth, Pregnancy prevention, Sexual and reproductive health
What Educators Need to Know About Online Sex Trafficking
August 23, 2016

What Educators Need to Know About Online Sex Trafficking

By Pamela Anderson, PhD, and Marcia Quackenbush, MS, MFT, MCHES | August 23, 2016    
Senior Research Associate and Senior Editor, ETR

First published on the Psychology Benefits Society blog of the American Psychological Association.

What comes to mind when you hear the words “sex trafficking”?

If you’re like a lot of people, you might think of a sinister alley in a foreign country serving as the local red light district. Or you might imagine a woman who comes to the U.S. with hopes of a better life for herself and her family who is then forced to sell her body to pay debt bondage. Maybe you think of a young woman violently forced by a hated pimp to work the streets.

By Pamela Anderson, PhD
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Tags: Human trafficking, Technology, Sexual and reproductive health, Sexual violence prevention, Violence prevention
Increasing Diversity in STEM: Free Tip Sheets Can Boost Your Success
August 17, 2016

Increasing Diversity in STEM: Free Tip Sheets Can Boost Your Success

By ETR | August 17, 2016

One of ETR’s areas of focus is Diversity in IT. Our team is nationally known for its work in research, evaluation and promoting strategies to increase diversity in STEM fields. They’ve done original research, developed and tested programs and learning approaches, and built partnerships that boost pathways from school to college to the workforce.

The team has also developed three tip sheets that can help boost the efficacy of school- and community-based programs with youth. See them all on this page, or go to the individual pages below.

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Tags: Diversity in technology, STEM, Technology education, K-12
Tale of a Health Education Evangelist
August 11, 2016

Tale of a Health Education Evangelist

By John Henry Ledwith | August 11, 2016
Senior Sales Manager, ETR

Someone asked me the other day, “Why are you such an evangelist for HealthSmart?” Actually, I get this question a lot. HealthSmart is ETR’s premiere health education program, and I talk about it all the time—not just as part of my job, but as part of my life.

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Tags: K-12, School health education, HealthSmart
Narinder Dhaliwal: Working to End Tobacco's Toll
August 8, 2016

Narinder Dhaliwal: Working to End Tobacco's Toll

By ETR | August 8, 2016
 

For most of her life, Narinder Dhaliwal has been an enthusiastic advocate for tobacco control. “I watched my grandfather slowly kill himself by smoking one or two packs a day,” she explains.

Some of the effects left a strong impression on Narinder. “His fingers on both hands were stained yellow. His lips were close to black. He was always surrounded by the smell of stale tobacco.”

By Narinder Dhaliwal, MA
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Tags: Tobacco, ETR staff, TECC
Pair Programming: 10 Cool Tips to Make It Work in Your Classrooms
August 2, 2016

Pair Programming: 10 Cool Tips to Make It Work in Your Classrooms

By Shannon Campe | August 2, 2016
Research Associate, ETR

Fifteen years ago, ETR started working with middle school girls to help them build computer programming skills and confidence. This was Girls Creating Games, a project where girls designed and programmed their own games. It was one of the earliest projects in our Diversity in IT group.

By Shannon Campe
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Tags: Research, Pair programming, Computer science education, Diversity in technology
Transgender Students & Student Information Systems: Moving Beyond the Binary
July 28, 2016

Transgender Students & Student Information Systems: Moving Beyond the Binary

By John Shields, PhD, MSW | July 28, 2016
Senior Research Associate, ETR

Recent publications have focused our nation’s attention on ensuring the safety and well-being of transgender students. We have been encouraged to safeguard their full access to all educational programs and activities.

In their “Dear Colleague” letter of May 2016, the U.S. Departments of Justice and Education have issued clear principles designed to “help ensure that transgender students enjoy a supportive and nondiscriminatory school environment.” In July, the California School Board Association released “Updated Legal Guidance” to help California school districts move from principle to practice.

By John Shields, PhD, MSW
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Tags: K-12, School health, Student wellness, Transgender, LGBTQ
From Policy to Effective Programs: Building a Dream
July 25, 2016

From Policy to Effective Programs: Building a Dream

By Melissa Donze | July 25, 2016
MPH Candidate, Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health & ETR Kirby Summer Intern

It’s hard to forget your first time on Capitol Hill. I was first there in the fall of 2012. I had just started working as the Pedro Zamora Public Policy Fellow at AIDS United (a DC-based nonprofit focused on ending the HIV epidemic in the United States through strategic grantmaking and policy/advocacy).

I remember how incredible it felt to walk those marble halls where so many great policymakers had walked before me. I remember how inspired I felt to see fellow advocates preparing for meetings with high-level members of Congress.

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Tags: HIV-AIDS, Policy, HIV, Kirby internship, Syringe exchange, Sex education
How Collaboration Strengthens Program Evaluation and Can Lead to Program Sustainability: A Look Back
July 20, 2016

How Collaboration Strengthens Program Evaluation and Can Lead to Program Sustainability: A Look Back

By ETR | July 19, 2016
Note: We're posting about some of the presentations ETR researchers and professional development specialists are offering at the Office of Adolescent HealthTeen Pregnancy Prevention Grantee Conference July 19-21.

ETR researchers are big fans of collaboration in program evaluation. “Collaboration can ensure that your evaluation design is realistic, appropriate and effective for the context,” explains ETR researcher Pam Drake, PhD.

She’ll be joining partners Mona Desai, MPH, from Children’s Hospital, Los Angeles, and Sarah Kershner, PhD, from the South Carolina Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy, to discuss the ways collaboration has supported effective evaluations in several teen pregnancy prevention programs.

Here are some other ways collaboration helps.

Mona Desai, Pamela Drake, Sarah Kershner. How Collaboration Strengthens Program Evaluation and Can Lead to Program Sustainability: A Look Back. Thursday, 7/21/16, 10:15-11:30 a.m. Panel in the Evaluation Track, Tubman A/B.

Read More
Tags: Research, Evaluation, OAH TPP, Pregnancy prevention, Adolescent health, Sexual and reproductive health
Evaluations: Adaptations and Fidelity
July 19, 2016

Evaluations: Adaptations and Fidelity

By ETR | July 19, 2016
Note: We're posting about some of the presentations ETR researchers and professional development specialists are offering at the Office of Adolescent Health Teen Pregnancy Prevention Grantee Conference July 19-21.

Here’s a challenge facing anyone delivering evidence-based teen pregnancy prevention programs. Educators usually want to adapt programs to boost their relevance with the teens they’re working with. Program managers need to be sure any adaptations are done ways that maintain the fidelity and effectiveness of a program. If there is an evaluation component in the project, managers also need to be sure that adaptations have been noted and are taken into consideration when data is analyzed and reported.

How do you feel about fidelity monitoring of your teen pregnancy prevention programs? Have you faced challenges balancing these dynamics between adaptation and program fidelity?

BA Laris, MPH. Evaluations: Adaptations/Fidelity. Tuesday 7/19/16 1:00-2:00 p.m. Topical Roundtable in the Evaluation Section, Key-3.

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Tags: Evaluation, Implementation fidelity, Pregnancy prevention, Adolescent health, Sexual and reproductive health
Masterful Marketing: Resources, Tips and Strategies from the Field!
July 19, 2016

Masterful Marketing: Resources, Tips and Strategies from the Field!

By ETR | July 19, 2016
Note: We're posting about some of the presentations ETR researchers and professional development specialists are offering at the Office of Adolescent Health Teen Pregnancy Prevention Grantee Conference July 19-21.

“You can’t affect the health and well-being of youth if no one knows you exist,” proclaims Kathy Plomer, MPH. Kathy is a member of ETR’s DASH Professional Learning Collaborative. In a perfect world, she acknowledges, doing good work would be enough to get people’s attention, support and participation.

“But we don’t live in that perfect world,” she continues. “Sometimes you need to employ some good, old-fashioned marketing techniques to get noticed.”

Laurie Bechhofer, Kathy Plomer, Timothy Kordic, Nicholas Slotterback. Masterful Marketing: Resources, Tips and Strategies from the Field. Wednesday, 7/20/16, 3:30-5:00 p.m. Poster #503 in the Sustainability Section, East Foyer of the Key Ballroom.

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Tags: Professional development, OAH TPP, Nonprofit marketing, Pregnancy prevention, Adolescent health, Sexual and reproductive health
Measuring Consistency of Contraception Use Over Time Among Teen Mothers
July 19, 2016

Measuring Consistency of Contraception Use Over Time Among Teen Mothers

By ETR | July 19, 2016
Note: We're posting about some of the presentations ETR researchers and professional development specialists are offering at the Office of Adolescent Health Teen Pregnancy Prevention Grantee Conference July 19-21.

Teen parents face a number of challenges. When a teen mother has a rapid repeat birth—a second (or more) child before age 20—the challenges become even greater. Almost 1 in 5 teen births is a repeat birth, and only about 1 in 5 sexually active teen mothers use the most effective birth control methods.

For the past 6 years, ETR researcher Pam Drake, PhD, has been collaborating with Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles (CHLA) Division of Adolescent and Young Adult Medicine on a project designed to support teen parents and prevent unintended repeat births. One strategy in the project is to increase the use of long-acting reversible contraception (LARC). These contraceptives, including IUDs and hormonal implants, are the most effective available today, and are safe for most women, including adolescents.

On Wednesday, July 20, Dr. Drake and co-presenters Mona Desai, MPH, Leslie Clark, PhD and Vivian Okonta, all from CHLA, are offering a poster describing how they measured the consistency of contraception use over time with the teen mothers participating in their project.

Pamela Drake, Mona Desai. Measurement Consistency of Contraception Use Over Time Among Teen Mothers. Wednesday, 7/20/16, 3:30-5:00 p.m. Poster #210 in the Evaluation Section, East Foyer of the Key Ballroom.

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Tags: Evaluation, OAH TPP, Pregnancy prevention, Teen moms, Adolescent health, Sexual and reproductive health
Connecting the Dots: Research, Program Development & Delivery, Professional Development
July 18, 2016

Connecting the Dots: Research, Program Development & Delivery, Professional Development

By ETR | July 18, 2016

A dynamic group of ETR researchers and professional development specialists will be presenting posters and panels at the upcoming Office of Adolescent Health Teen Pregnancy Prevention Grantee Conference. The conference takes place in Baltimore July 19-21. The theme is “Connecting the Dots: Collaborating to Achieve Lasting Impacts for Youth.” We’ll be posting here about some of their presentations over the coming days.

We hope you’ll keep an eye out for these posts. Even if your work isn’t specific to the field of adolescent sexual health, you’ll find insights and information useful for program developers, health education researchers, front line providers and people who design and deliver trainings.

The conference hashtag is #2016TPP. Check the LinkedIn Teen Pregnancy Prevention Networking Group to hear more about TPP and to connect with attendees.

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Tags: OAH TPP, Pregnancy prevention, Adolescent health, Sexual and reproductive health
A Team Approach to Data Collection and Evaluation Planning
July 18, 2016

A Team Approach to Data Collection and Evaluation Planning

By ETR | July 18, 2016
Note: We’re posting about some of the presentations ETR researchers and professional development specialists are offering at the Office of Adolescent Health Teen Pregnancy Prevention Grantee Conference July 19-21.

“Evaluations don’t happen in isolation,” say ETR researchers Pam Drake, PhD and BA Laris, MPH. Programs need to involve developers, administrators, implementers and evaluators to come up with an evaluation plan that will produce meaningful results.

On Wednesday, July 20, they’ll be presenting a poster on A Team Approach to Data Collection and Evaluation Planning. “It’s important to think about both big-scope and smaller questions,” they explain. Here are some factors to keep in mind.

BA Laris, MPH and Pamela Drake, Phd. A Team Approach to Data Collection and Evaluation Planning. Wednesday, 7/20/16, 3:30-5:00 p.m. Poster #209 in the Evaluation Section, East Foyer of the Key Ballroom.
Read More
Tags: Evaluation, Teamwork
Memory and Learning: A Formula for Teen Pregnancy Prevention Impact!
July 18, 2016

Memory and Learning: A Formula for Teen Pregnancy Prevention Impact!

By ETR | July 18, 2016
Note: We're posting about some of the presentations ETR researchers and professional development specialists are offering at the Office of Adolescent Health Teen Pregnancy Prevention Grantee Conference, July 19-20.

Learned anything new lately? Your brain is being bombarded by massive amounts of information every minute—sights, sounds, words, smells, sensations. What happens to all of that info? Thankfully, most of it is forgotten. Your brain takes a look at it and decides what to ignore and when to pay attention.

If you’re an implementer working with teens to build healthy skills for pregnancy prevention, you’ve got critical messages and skills you want these learners to attend to. What should you do? Use amazing brain science to make learning stick!

Debra Christopher, MSM and Tracy Wright, MAED. Memory and Learning: A Formula for Teen Pregnancy Prevention Impact! Wednesday 7/20/16, 3:30-5:00 p.m. Poster #107 in the Program Delivery & Improvement Section, East Foyer of the Key Ballroom.
Read More
Tags: Learning, Memory, Neuroscience, Pregnancy prevention, Adolescent health, OAH TPP
Sharing Learning Objectives: Think Like a Marketer, Not an Instructional Designer--Part 2
July 12, 2016

Sharing Learning Objectives: Think Like a Marketer, Not an Instructional Designer--Part 2

By Tracy Wright, MAED | July 12, 2016
Project Director, ETR

Are you a trainer or facilitator? You can improve the delivery of your learning opportunities by spending a little more time thinking like a marketer, and a little less thinking like an instructional designer.

In Part 1 of this post, we reviewed the use of learning objectives to support effective instructional design. I suggested that while carefully constructed learning objectives are a vital step in the design of a learning opportunity, they may not be the best choice when promoting or delivering a training.

Remember, the three most important purposes of sharing learning objectives with participants are:

  1. To describe what the event is about.
  2. To focus learners’ attention on the critical content.
  3. To motivate people to act (e.g., register for the event, attend the event, change their behavior as a result of the event).

Let’s look at some different but effective approaches to achieving each of these ends.

By Tracy Wright, MAED
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Tags: Training design, Learning objectives
Healing and Justice Matter
July 11, 2016

Healing and Justice Matter

By Robin Perlas | July 11, 2016
Training Coordinator, ETR

Last week will go down in history as one of the bloodiest in US history. In the few days following our nation’s Independence Day holiday weekend, racially-charged gun violence took the lives of a number of civilians as well as five police officers. Investigations are ongoing and many facts remain to be uncovered. What we do know is that a lot of people are in mourning, and our country is once again divided at its core.

By Robin Perlas
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Tags: Social justice, Violence prevention, Public health

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