New Grant To Engineer Better STI Prevention For College Students

September 28, 2015:
blank MOST flowchart
Congratulations to the team of researchers from The Methodology Center and University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG) on their recently awarded grant, “Engineering an Online STI Prevention Program.” One in four students will be diagnosed with a sexually transmitted infection (STI) over the course of their collegiate careers. Binge drinking, which is common among college students, contributes to STI risk factors like casual sex, unprotected sex, and multiple-partner sexual experiences. The research team for this National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism-funded project will use the multiphase optimization strategy (MOST) to design an optimized, internet-based intervention that targets the intersection of alcohol use and risky sex among college students.

MOST enables researchers to engineer effective and efficient behavioral interventions. In this study, the researchers will use MOST to strengthen intervention components aimed at reducing risky drinking, risky sex, and their co-occurrence, and then using the strengthened components to form an optimized intervention. The research team comprises Linda Collins, director of The Methodology Center; David Wyrick, associate professor of public health education at UNCG; Kari Kugler, Methodology Center investigator; Amanda Tanner, assistant professor of public health at UNCG; and Jeff Milroy, associate director of the Institute to Promote Athlete Health & Wellness at UNCG. The project has three aims: to develop and pilot test intervention components targeting the link between alcohol use and sexual risk behaviors, to build an optimized preventive intervention, and to evaluate the new intervention’s effectiveness through a randomized controlled trial. The resulting intervention will be designed to reduce STI incidence among college students and provide a knowledge base for STI-prevention interventions for other at-risk populations.

Bookmark the permalink.