Assessment of cancer education seminars for appalachian populations

Mira L. Katz, Michael L. Pennell, Mark B. Dignan, Electra D. Paskett

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Cancer education seminars for Appalachian populations were conducted to: (1) increase knowledge of existing cancer disparities, (2) disseminate findings from Appalachian community-based participatory research (CBPR) projects, and (3) foster CBPR capacity building among community members by promoting social networking. Evaluation of the seminars was completed by: (1) using pre-post-surveys to assess changes in knowledge and attitudes at three regional and one national seminar and (2) measuring a change in the social network patterns of participants at a national seminar by analyzing the names of individuals known at the beginning and at the end of the seminar by each participant. Among participants, there was a significant increase in knowledge of Appalachian cancer disparities at two seminars [national, t(145)=3.41, p=0.001; Pennsylvania, t(189)=3.00, p=0.003] and a change in attitudes about Appalachia at one seminar [Ohio t(193)0-2.80, p=0.006]. Social network analysis, operationally defined for this study as familiarity with individuals attending the conference, showed participation in the national seminar fostered capacity building for future CBPR by the development of new network ties. Findings indicate that short-term outcomes of the seminars were accomplished. Future educational seminars should consider using social network analysis as a new evaluation methodology.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)287-293
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Cancer Education
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 2012

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors which to acknowledge the support from the following grants: National Center for Minority Health and Health Disparities (R24MD002785) and the National Cancer Institute 5 U01 CA114622 (ACCN), 5 P30CA16058-31 (The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center), UL1RR025755 from the National Center For Research Resources, and K07 CA 107079 (MLK).


  • Appalachian region
  • Cancer
  • Health disparities

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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