skip navigation


Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

The document referenced below is part of the NCJRS Virtual Library collection. To conduct further searches of the collection, visit the Virtual Library. See the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.


NCJ Number: 220233 Find in a Library
Title: Great Minds Don't Always Think Alike: The Challenges of Conducting Substance Abuse Prevention Research in Public Schools
Journal: Journal of Drug Education  Volume:37  Issue:2  Dated:2007  Pages:97-105
Author(s): Susan L. Renes; Chris Ringwalt Dr.PH; Heddy Kovach Clark Ph.D.; Stean Hanley M.P.H.
Date Published: 2007
Page Count: 9
Type: Issue Overview
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This article reviews issues related to researching substance abuse prevention programs in school settings, and assesses challenges related to recruitment, communication, research design, surveying, and ensuring program fidelity.
Abstract: Recruiting schools to serve as sites for the evaluation of a prevention curriculum requires much more than simply asking the school’s permission. Before a school enrolls, there must be an understanding on the part of both the research team and key school district and school personnel regarding the nature and extent of the study’s requirements, and what adjustments a school will have to make to its routines to support a successful collaboration. Schools, in particular, must fully appreciate the reality that the researcher is likely to impose a considerable burden in return for whatever programmatic services are offered to students, or financial incentives to the school. It is observed that researchers must fully understand that school systems are primarily accountable for educating students. Prevention researchers and school personnel lack a common understanding concerning the opportunities and burdens of school-based drug prevention research. When researchers and schools agree to collaborate on a study of the effectiveness of a substance abuse prevention curriculum, their partnership can look superficially beneficial for all concerned. There are, however, a variety of problems that can sour this collaboration. These problems originate from limitations and constraints pertaining to the school environment, methodological demands made by the researcher, and a lack of mutual understanding between school administrators and researchers regarding how to successfully address and resolve the challenges that will occur. This article examines the problems related to recruitment, communication, research design, survey, and fidelity that can occur when researchers and schools agree to work together. The article discusses the likely perspectives of both the researcher and the school, and gives examples of solutions that have proved acceptable to both. References
Main Term(s): Drug prevention programs
Index Term(s): Drug research; Juvenile delinquency research; Research design; Research programs; Researcher subject relations; School delinquency programs; Schools
To cite this abstract, use the following link:

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.