Wednesday, March 10, 2010
Pre-Function Lobby & Grand Ballroom D2/E (M4) (Omni Hotel)
Background: Despite several advantages afforded by school-based STI prevention efforts, adoption, implementation, and effectiveness remain inconsistent for a variety of sociotechnical reasons. Such efforts may benefit from web-based content management systems (CMS). With CMS, teachers can track learner progress and share implementation ideas; learners can participate in educational activities, including posting their own content; administrators can govern access to content and activities based on content ‘tags’; parents can learn about the curricula; and researchers can update and expand content as new information and evidence emerges. Despite these opportunities, no research efforts have explored CMS technologies for delivery of prevention curricula.
Objectives: Determine the acceptability, usability, and effectiveness of an STI prevention curriculum delivered in schools via web-based CMS.
Methods: A panel of respected STI/HIV experts and practitioners identified objectives and content aligned with NHES and SIECUS guidelines. The development effort used an iterative, user-centered development methodology guided by well-established pedagogical approaches and strategies coupled with an integrative health behavioral change framework. Usability and efficacy data were gathered from students, teachers, parents, and other stakeholders through mixed-methods single-subject testing and field trials.
Results: CMS-based portals for teachers, parents, and students and a series of media-rich, highly-interactive lessons and activities were developed. Significant effects were observed in targeted outcomes and the effort was well-received by stakeholder audiences, who cited engagement, online tracking, learner interaction, and tailorability, replicability and scalability.
Conclusions: CMS-based STI prevention materials can overcome several longstanding barriers to program adoption. However, existing issues, such as implementation fidelity, remain, and may be worsened, and new issues, including how to supervise learner posting of new content, arise.
Implications for Programs, Policy, and/or Research: The opportunities afforded by CMS-based educational/intervention programs are myriad, each coming with social, organizational, technical, and practical benefits and liabilities. Such delivery systems deserve heightened attention as we seek to optimize adoptability, usability, and effectiveness of programs.