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Using humour in peer-education: Trials and tribulations of an action research project

Scott-Parker, B, Fox, T (Peer reviewed)

General

ARSC conference 2015

Background_x000D_

Action research projects (ARP) in which students operationalise practical approaches to specific health issues are a compulsory element of the Queensland senior Health Education subject. As part of the ARP, the first author was consulted by the second author and her students regarding young driver road safety issues, interventions, and intervention evaluation. Students then developed a humourous parade presentation and three surveys targeting youth driving distracted._x000D_

Aims_x000D_

To examine the impact of the presentation; and to reflect upon the difficulties and successes associated with engaging researchers, teachers, and youth. _x000D_

Method_x000D_

Seventy-six students (61.8% female) completed a pre-presentation survey (baseline survey); 267 Year 11 and 12 students watched the presentation and immediately completed evaluation survey one; 42 students completed evaluation survey two a fortnight later._x000D_

Results_x000D_

Baseline survey: 60% of participants had been a passenger in a car in which the driver was texting. _x000D_

Evaluation survey one: 77% of participants reported the presentation had made them think about their actions on the road; 33% of participants reported the take-home message related to active behaviours such as eyes-on-the-road and phone-in-the-boot. _x000D_

Evaluation survey two: 43% of participants reported they had been a passenger of a distracted driver during the intervening period._x000D_

Discussion and Conclusions _x000D_

Translating research findings into real-world practice and policy is a challenge for all road safety researchers. Engaging with youth can also be challenging, and the school environment provides an ideal context for peer-based intervention. Researchers play a key role in translation, supporting teachers and students with limited resources.