The American Academy of Health Behavior

Events & Happenings in Health Behavior Research

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AAHB 2017 Poster and Podium Abstract Submission OPEN

The American Academy of Health Behavior invites abstract submissions to be considered for both poster and podium presentations at the 2017 Annual Meeting in Tucson, Arizona. The meeting theme: Health Behavior Research in the Age of Personalized Medicine highlights the need for public health practitioners and medical personnel to collaboratively migrate towards a tailored approach to health and well-being by accounting for unique personal characteristics (i.e., genetics, social and environmental risk factors) and individual responses to interventions. Personalized medicine has the potential to alter the way health problems are studied and managed, which can ultimately advance public and behavioral health.

Links for Abstract Submissions:

2017 Poster Abstract Submission
 2017 Podium Abstract Submission

AAHB will accept submissions until September 27, 2016 at 11:59 PM., Pacific Standard Time
Authors will be notified of the status of their submission(s) by November 7, 2016.

2017 Research Review Committee Chair, Abigail Gamble, Ph.D.

SBM Issues Call for Abstracts
The Society of Behavioral Medicine (SBM) has issued a call for abstracts for its 37th Annual Meeting & Scientific Sessions, to be held March 30 to April 2, 2016, in Washington, DC. The meeting theme is "Behavioral Medicine at a Crossroads: 21st Century Challenges and Solutions.” SBM welcomes abstract submissions from members and non-members alike, for presentation consideration as a poster, paper, seminar, panel discussion, or symposium. SBM encourages you to submit your most innovative and compelling work for consideration. The abstract deadline is September 8, 2015, at 11:59 p.m. EST. Find more information and submit your abstract online by visiting
Congratulations to Dr. Rick Petosa!

Principal Investigator; RICK PETOSA, The Ohio State University; 

Project Dates: 03/13/2015 – 02/28/2019
Anticipated Total Award Amount: $1,915,596
Project Sponsor: National Institute of Child Health & Human Development

A skill-based RCT for physical activity using peer mentors

Appalachians are the most sedentary population in the U.S.; teens are particularly sedentary. Only 13.6% of teens reported 60 minutes of daily moderate activity, while 38% reported no moderate physical activity and 78.2% reported no vigorous physical activity in the past week. The long-term goal of this study is to positively impact the physical activity patterns to improve health outcomes including the high rates of obesity in Appalachian teens. Our approach will train peer mentors to deliver the culturally appropriate intervention and provide social support that is critical for facilitating and sustainin health behavior change. Our objective is to compare the efficacy of an innovative healthy lifestyle skills mentoring program (Mentored Planning to be Active [MBA]) to a teacher led program (PBA) for increasing physical activity in Appalachian high school teens. MBA emphasizes the social determinants of health by using a social networking approach that trains peer mentors to support targeted teens. We will test the hypothesis that, compared to delivery by teachers in a classroom setting, an innovative delivery format of PBA by local peer mentors will promote the adoption of healthier physical activity and regular exercise among teens by combining peer mentoring with a tailored self-regulation lifestyle program. This study will guide the development of effective interventions (currently lacking) specifically targeting residents of Appalachia, a region with disproportionately high prevalence rates of childhood obesity and significant challenges to achieving healthy lifestyles. We propose a group-randomized controlled trial (G-RCT) to evaluate mentored delivery in Appalachian Ohio. We will recruit high schools in 2 waves, with 10 in Wave 1 and 10 in Wave 2, for a total of 20 schools. For each wave of 10 schools, we will randomly assign 5 schools to each condition–intervention (MBA]) and comparison (PBA)–for a total of 10 schools in each of the two conditions by study’s end. We will collect data at baseline (T1), 3 months post intervention (T2), and 6 months post intervention (T3). Positive intra-class correlation is expected among observations from students in the same school. Ignoring positive ICC can inflate Type 1 error rate. We will avoid these problems by analytic methods appropriate to the structure of the design and data. Specifically, we will use Linear Mixed Models and Generalized Linear Mixed Models to account for various levels of correlation among subjects. Such an approach is also known as a “mixed-model ANCOVA.” Power for this study was based on power for the primary analysis comparing BMI outcomes at T2 between the two groups. We will implement these models using SAS PROC MIXED and GLIMMIX, Version 9.3.

R. L. Petosa, Ph.D. FAAHB - Professor, The Ohio State University

Health and Exercise Science - College of Education and Human Ecology

Journal Publishes Evidence-Based Programs for Older Adults

Bridging research and practice perspectives, Frontiers in Public Health – Public Health Education and Promotion has published a Research Topic to advance knowledge about the reach, effectiveness, adoption, implementation, and maintenance of evidence-based programs (EBP) for older adults. This coordinated set of papers reflects work by an impressive list of authors representing a variety of disciplines, community sectors, agencies, and geographic locations. The companion eBook aims to enhance practice, inform policy, and build systems of support and delivery for EBP. Written for a diverse audience and containing practical implications and recommendations for introducing, delivering, and sustaining EBP in a multitude of settings, the material within this eBook can be used to complement academic curricula and courses for students as well as training curricula for professionals in the field. 

The full volume and forthcoming eBook can be accessed free-of-charge from:

For more information about this Research Topics Issue, please contact the Co-Editors:

     Dr. Marcia G. Ory (  
     Dr. Matthew Lee Smith (

Congratulations Dr. Kenneth Ward!
The University of Memphis Spring 2014 Commencement Speaker - Dr. Kenneth Ward, recipient of the 2014 Willard R. Sparks Eminent Faculty Award and professor and director of the Division of Social and Behavioral Sciences in the School of Public Health, spoke to the Class of 2014.  To see Dr. Ward's Commencement Address, click here.
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