207380 Evaluation of CommunityConnects

Monday, November 9, 2009

Lindsay E. Rosenfeld, SD, SM , Harvard Catalyst Clinical Translational Science Center/Center for Biomedical Informatics, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA
Shalini Tendulkar, ScD, ScM , Institute for Community Health, Cambridge Health Alliance, Cambridge, MA
Karen Hacker, MD, MPH , Institute for Community Health, Cambridge Health Alliance, Cambridge, MA
Hycienth Ahaneku, MBBS, MPH , Institute for Community Health, Cambridge Health Alliance, Cambridge, MA
Alexa T. McCray, PhD , Harvard Catalyst Clinical Translational Science Center/Center for Biomedical Informatics, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA
Background: In April 2009, the Community Engagement Program of the Harvard Catalyst Clinical Translational Science Center, a National Institutes of Health funded initiative which promotes the translation of scientific research to the community, launched the Community ConnectToResearch website (www.connecttoresearch.org). This site provides the general public with information about health topics, clinical research, and community-participatory research. A website evaluation study is being conducted to explore whether the content, layout and navigation are accessible and useful to the intended audience.

Methods: The website evaluation consists of three components-- focus groups, key informant interviews and usability testing with the intended audiences. The specific aim is to understand user interactions with the site and their perceptions of the content in order to improve the website in future iterations.

During each of two evaluation periods, the following will be conducted: a) two focus groups will explore content concerns, b) 5-9 individual website usability sessions will be carried out to understand how users navigate the site to locate information, and accomplish specific tasks, and c) 5-9 key informant interviews will be held with faculty and staff of Harvard as well as with members of community organizations familiar with public communication.

Results: In this session, we will present findings from Community ConnectToResearch evaluation. This will include presentation of key themes from the focus groups, a summary of findings from the key informant interviews and presentation of usability test findings. We will also demonstrate the website and its functionality as well as discuss the development process.

Discussion: Findings will be used to inform future Community ConnectToResearch website development, and direct future translational communication initiatives with the public.

Learning Objectives:
1) By the end of the session, the participant will be able to discuss the objectives of CommunityConnects, a website dedicated to providing information to the public about health topics, clinical research, and community-participatory research. 2) By the end of the session, the participant will be able to explain the difference between focus groups, usability sessions, and key informant interviews as they relate to assessing a website intended for the public. 3) By the end of the session, the participant will be able to describe and identify the lessons learned from this evaluation study.

Keywords: Communication Technology, Evaluation

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: EDUCATION November 2008 Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, MA SD: Society, Human Development, and Health; Conc: Health and Social Policy; Major: Urban Health and Social Policy; Minors: Program Planning and Evaluation, Health Communications; Certificate: Women, Gender, and Health Focus: traditionally “non-health” policies that impact health, e.g. urban planning and design, housing, neighborhoods, education, (im)migration, and health literacy Dissertation: “Exploring Disparities in Asthma at Multiple Levels: Individual, Building, and Neighborhood Issues” June 2004 Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, MA SM: Health and Social Behavior Awards: Albert Schweitzer Fellowship and Rappaport Public Policy Fellowship May 2000 Brown University, Providence, RI AB with honors: Women’s Studies, magna cum laude, overall GPA: 3.9 Honors Thesis: gender, ethnicity, and social class in human service program design Honors: Phi Beta Kappa Oct 2008-present Postdoctoral Fellow, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, MA  Continue research work with New England Family Study.  Explore new possibilities of research within health literacy and place-based disparity issues (i.e. regional equity, residential segregation, built environment).  Examine methods to explore current and potential non-health policies and programs that impact health. EXAMPLES OF EXPERIENCE: Sept 2008-present Research Associate, Harvard Clinical and Translational Science Center, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA  Develop web portals as part of interdisciplinary team to 1) promote collaboration among Harvard science community and 2) provide access to information about clinical research for the community-at-large.  Develop evaluation study to examine usability and content of web portal for community-at-large. Oct 2002-Aug 2008 Member, Health Literacy/Health Communications Working Group Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, MA  Discuss new health literacy research, critiquing and addressing members’ work. Sept 2006-Dec 2007 Coordinator of Health Literacy Studies Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, MA  Managed inquiries; organized and gave presentations; performed research; coordinated functions of Health Literacy/Health Communications working group. Jan-June 2004 Project Coordinator (Schweitzer Fellow) La Alianza Hispana, Inc., Boston, MA  Conducted a health literacy assessment for health-related programs to address issues of readability, comprehensibility, and layout; created new materials, redesigned materials in-use, and trained staff. SAMPLE OF PRESENTATIONS: May 2007/2008 Guest Lecturer, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, MA “Psychosocial Theory in Practice – Case Study: College counseling for high school students in a poor, urban high school”, co-presenter with Cassandra Okechukwu  Presented case study written by myself and co-presenter.  Facilitated program critique employing psychosocial theories in the final class of a capstone doctoral level theories course. Nov 2007 135th American Public Health Association Meeting, Washington, DC “Puerto Ricans in the Bronx, NY: Sociocontextual influences on asthma – building and neighborhood type”  Presented orals session entitled: ‘Strategies to Reduce Asthma Disparities,’ participated in panel discussion. March 2007 Sixth Annual Qualitative Research Conference, University of Missouri-St. Louis, College of Education, St. Louis, MO “Freelisting: Beyond survey development”, co-presenter with Vanessa Watts  Presented full-session on the qualitative method of freelisting, leading interactive discussion on its use for a variety of research areas. Nov 2006 American College of Rheumatology Annual Meeting, Washington, DC “Health Literacy in America: Why and how to improve written and oral communication”, co-presenter with Victoria Gall  Presented full-session to health care researchers and providers concerning health literacy research; facilitated plain language materials discussion and assessment tools practice. Oct 2006 The New England Regional Advisory Committee Meeting: Health Literacy – The Language of Adolescents, Boston, MA “Applying the Principles of Health Literacy: Interactive discussion/critique of adolescent health brochures”  Presented health literacy concepts to regional practitioners and taught participants to use assessment tools such as the SMOG, SAM, and PMOSE/IKIRSCH.  Led practice of assessment tools, using materials from their field work. July 2006 Plain Language Institute, The Literacy Assistance Center, New York, New York co-presenter with Jennie Epstein Anderson  Presented day-long training to government and health officials, health insurance and direct service providers, and foundation employees concerning various aspects of plain language and health literacy, including research and the how-to. April 2006 Preventing Disasters and Minimizing their Consequences, American Academy of Arts and Sciences, Cambridge, MA co-presenter with Dr. Rima Rudd  Facilitated discussion group concerning the relationship of disaster prevention and message communication to health literacy, and presented the working group’s “next steps” to the larger conference. Served on presenters’ panel.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.