Prevention Science (Prev Sci )

Publisher: Society for Prevention Research, Springer Verlag


Prevention Science will be the official publication of the Society for Prevention Research. The Journal will serve as an interdisciplinary forum designed to disseminate new developments in the theory research and practice of prevention. Prevention sciences encompassing etiology epidemiology and intervention will be represented through peer-reviewed original research articles on a variety of health and social problems including but not limited to substance abuse mental health HIV/AIDS violence accidents teenage pregnancy suicide delinquency STD's obesity diet/nutrition exercise and chronic illness. The journal also publishes literature reviews theoretical articles and papers concerning new developments in methodology.

Impact factor 2.63

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    Prevention Science website
  • Other titles
    Prevention science (Online)
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  • Material type
    Document, Periodical, Internet resource
  • Document type
    Internet Resource, Computer File, Journal / Magazine / Newspaper

Publisher details

Springer Verlag

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    • Articles in some journals can be made Open Access on payment of additional charge
  • Classification
    ‚Äč green

Publications in this journal

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Although considerable research attention is paid to the misuse of controlled medications, a relatively small number of studies focus on prescription opioid misuse (POM) among racial/ethnic minority adolescents. This study aimed to determine the prevalence of POM among adolescents in the three largest racial/ethnic groups (Whites, Hispanics, Blacks) and identify demographic and psychosocial factors that increase the risk of POM. Additionally, the authors applied concepts from social bonding theory and social learning theory to determine the extent to which these concepts explain adolescent POMamong each group. Using data from the 2012 National Survey of Drug Use and Health, multivariate logistic regression models were estimated to determine which factors were associated with an increased risk of POM. Results show that Blacks (6.08 %) have the highest prevalence rate of adolescent POM and risk factors vary by race/ethnicity. These findings are important in that they enhance the ability of prescribers to identify high-risk adolescent patients and help to make prevention interventions more culturally relevant.
    Prevention Science 10/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: Although it is widely recognized that variation in implementation fidelity influences the impact of preventive interventions, little is known about how specific contextual factors may affect the implementation of social and behavioral interventions in classrooms. Theoretical research highlights the importance of multiple contextual influences on implementation, including factors at the classroom and school level (Domitrovich et al., Advances in School Mental Health Promotion, 1, 6-28, 2008). The current study used multi-level modeling to empirically examine the influence of teacher, classroom, and school characteristics on the implementation of classroom-based positive behavior support strategies over the course of 4 years. Data were collected in the context of a 37-school randomized controlled trial examining the effectiveness of school-wide Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports. Multi-level results identified several school-level contextual factors (e.g., school size, behavioral disruptions) and teacher-level factors (perceptions of school organizational health and grade level taught) associated with variability in the implementation of classroom-based positive behavior supports. Implications for prevention research and practice are discussed.
    Prevention Science 05/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: Among the available treatments for disruptive behavior problems, a need remains for additional service options to reduce antisocial behavior and prevent further development along delinquent and violent pathways. The Stop Now and Plan (SNAP) Program is an intervention for antisocial behavior among boys between 6 and 11. This paper describes a randomized controlled treatment effectiveness study of SNAP versus standard behavioral health services. The treatment program was delivered to youth with aggressive, rule-breaking, or antisocial behavior in excess of clinical criterion levels. Outcomes were measured at 3, 9, and 15 months from baseline. Youth in the SNAP condition showed significantly greater reduction in aggression, conduct problems, and overall externalizing behavior, as well as counts of oppositional defiant disorder and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder symptoms. Additional benefits for SNAP were observed on measures of depression and anxiety. Further analyses indicated that the SNAP program was more effective among those with a higher severity of initial behavioral problems. At 1 year follow-up, treatment benefits for SNAP were maintained on some outcome measures (aggression, ADHD and ODD, depression and anxiety) but not others. Although overall juvenile justice system contact was not significantly different, youth in SNAP had significantly fewer charges against them relative to those standard services. The SNAP Program, when contrasted with standard services alone, was associated with greater, clinically meaningful, reductions in targeted behaviors. It may be particularly effective for youth with more severe behavioral problems and may result in improvements in internalizing problems as well.
    Prevention Science 04/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: When the goal of prevention research is to capture in statistical models some measure of the dynamic complexity in structures and processes implicated in problem behavior and its prevention, approaches such as multilevel modeling (MLM) and structural equation modeling (SEM) are indicated. Yet the assumptions that must be satisfied if these approaches are to be used responsibly raise concerns regarding their use in prevention research involving smaller samples. In this article, we discuss in nontechnical terms the role of sample size in MLM and SEM and present findings from the latest simulation work on the performance of each approach at sample sizes typical of prevention research. For each statistical approach, we draw from extant simulation studies to establish lower bounds for sample size (e.g., MLM can be applied with as few as ten groups comprising ten members with normally distributed data, restricted maximum likelihood estimation, and a focus on fixed effects; sample sizes as small as N = 50 can produce reliable SEM results with normally distributed data and at least three reliable indicators per factor) and suggest strategies for making the best use of the modeling approach when N is near the lower bound.
    Prevention Science 04/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: Externalizing behavior is common in preschool children and shows stability over the lifespan implying that strategies for early intervention and prevention are needed. Improving parenting reduces child behavior problems but it is unproven whether the effects transfer to kindergarten. Strategies implemented directly by teachers in the kindergarten may be a promising approach. The effectiveness of the teacher's module of the Prevention Program for Externalizing Problem Behavior (PEP-TE) was investigated in a study using a within-subject control group design. Each of the 144 teachers enrolled identified one child with externalizing problem behavior (aged 3-6 years) and rated that child's behavior problems [broadband externalizing, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), oppositional defiant disorder] as well as their own behavior (attending skills) and burden by the child. Changes in child symptoms and teacher behavior or burden during the 3-month waiting period (control) and 3-month treatment period were compared. Stability of treatment effects at both 3- and 12-months follow-up after treatment was examined. Multilevel modeling analyses showed that, despite a reduction in externalizing behavior and ADHD scores during the waiting period, all child problem behavior scores decreased during the treatment period compared with the waiting period. The teacher's behavior also improved and their burden decreased. These treatment effects were stable during follow-up for the subsample remaining in the kindergarten for up to 1 year. This study shows that a teacher-based intervention alone is associated with improvements in both the externalizing behavior of preschoolers and teacher behavior and burden. Indications of long-term stability of effects were found.
    Prevention Science 04/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: Current measures of implementer fidelity often fail to adequately measure core constructs of adherence and competence, and their relationship to outcomes can be mixed. To address these limitations, we used observational methods to assess these constructs and their relationships to proximal outcomes in a randomized trial of a school-based preventive intervention (Rochester Resilience Project) designed to strengthen emotion self-regulation skills in first-third graders with elevated aggressive-disruptive behaviors. Within the intervention group (n = 203), a subsample (n = 76) of students was selected to reflect the overall sample. Implementers were 10 paraprofessionals. Videotaped observations of three lessons from year 1 of the intervention (14 lessons) were coded for each implementer-child dyad on adherence (content) and competence (quality). Using multilevel modeling, we examined how much of the variance in the fidelity measures was attributed to implementer and to the child within implementer. Both measures had large and significant variance accounted for by implementer (competence, 68 %; adherence, 41 %); child within implementer did not account for significant variance indicating that ratings reflected stable qualities of the implementer rather than the child. Raw adherence and competence scores shared 46 % of variance (r = .68). Controlling for baseline differences and age, the amount (adherence) and quality (competence) of program delivered predicted children's enhanced response to the intervention on both child and parent reports after 6 months, but not on teacher report of externalizing behavior. Our findings support the use of multiple observations for measuring fidelity and that adherence and competence are important components of fidelity which could be assessed by many programs using these methods.
    Prevention Science 04/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: The Bahamian Ministry of Education has elected to implement at a national level in all Bahamian government grade six classes an evidence-based HIV prevention intervention [Focus on Youth in the Caribbean (FOYC)]. This study explores fidelity of implementation of the intervention, factors that may influence implementation fidelity, and the impact of variations in the implementation fidelity on student outcomes. Data were collected in the first wave of national implementation in 2011, involving 35 government primary schools and 110 teachers and 2,811 students. Structural equation modeling was performed to examine the relationships among factors which facilitated or impeded teachers' implementation of FOYC. Results indicate that teachers taught 16.3 out of 30 core activities, 24.9 out of 46 total activities, and 4.4 out of 8 sessions on average. The strongest predictor of implementation fidelity was teacher comfort level with the FOYC curriculum. Teachers who did not perceive the FOYC intervention to be important for their students or who had attended only part of a FOYC training workshop were more likely to change the curriculum. Increased duration of experience as a teacher (>10 years) was negatively associated with fidelity of implementation. Teacher's perception of the importance of the FOYC intervention and implementation fidelity had direct positive effects on students' HIV/AIDS knowledge, reproductive health skills, protective intentions, and self-efficacy. Youth did not appear to benefit from FOYC if two or fewer sessions were delivered. We concluded that an evidence-based HIV prevention intervention can be implemented at a national level. Prior training of teachers in the intervention curriculum, teacher perception of the importance of the intervention, and fewer years as a teacher are associated with implementation fidelity. Implementation fidelity is associated with improved student outcomes.
    Prevention Science 04/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: Falls from playground equipment during play are a leading cause of injury for elementary school children. Changes to playground design and surfacing materials can reduce injury risk. However, there is also a need for intervention programs to reduce risky play behaviors by children that are associated with falls. The Cool 2 Be Safe program was developed based on past research that identified effective strategies for targeting injury beliefs that predict risk behaviors on playgrounds among individually tested elementary school children. The current study evaluated the effectiveness of delivering these activities as an integrated program and in a group format in after school programs organized by Boys and Girls Clubs of Canada. The clubs were provided all program and extensive training materials, and a webinar training session was conducted for facilitators. Observations of sessions provided data on fidelity of program delivery. Pre- and post-intervention data assessing children's injury beliefs were collected via survey, with children participating in four structured activity sessions in small groups between premeasures and post-measures. The training materials proved to be quite effective; observational data indicated 88 % compliance with the procedures. Comparing children's pre- and post-responses revealed positive changes in injury-risk beliefs that have been shown to predict reduced risk taking on playgrounds. This initial evaluation suggests that the Cool 2 Be Safe community program holds much promise as a means for addressing the issue of fall-risk behaviors by elementary school children on playgrounds.
    Prevention Science 04/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: The transition to school may be particularly difficult for children with developmental disabilities and behavioral difficulties. Such children are likely to experience problems with self-regulation skills, which are critical to school adjustment. Additionally, inconsistent discipline practices and low parental involvement in children's schooling may contribute to a poor transition to school. This study employed a randomized clinical trial to examine the effects of a school readiness intervention that focused on children's self-regulation skills as well as parenting and parental involvement in school. Results showed that the intervention had positive effects on children's self-regulation in kindergarten as measured by teacher and observer reports. Additionally, the intervention significantly reduced ineffective parenting prior to school entry, which in turn affected parental involvement. This finding is significant because it demonstrates that parental involvement in school may be increased by efforts to improve parenting skills in general. Overall, the study demonstrated that school adjustment across kindergarten among children with developmental disabilities and behavioral difficulties can be enhanced through an intervention aimed specifically at improving school readiness skills.
    Prevention Science 03/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: In response to recent calls for programs that can prevent multiple types of youth violence, the current study examined whether Safe Dates, an evidence-based dating violence prevention program, was effective in preventing other forms of youth violence. Using data from the original Safe Dates randomized controlled trial, this study examined (1) the effectiveness of Safe Dates in preventing peer violence victimization and perpetration and school weapon carrying 1 year after the intervention phase was completed and (2) moderation of program effects by the sex or race/ethnicity of the adolescent. Ninety percent (n = 1,690) of the eighth and ninth graders who completed baseline questionnaires completed the 1-year follow-up assessment. The sample was 51 % female and 26 % minority (of whom 69 % was black and 31 % was of another minority race/ethnicity). There were no baseline treatment group differences in violence outcomes. Treatment condition was significantly associated with peer violence victimization and school weapon carrying at follow-up; there was 12 % less victimization and 31 % less weapon carrying among those exposed to Safe Dates than those among controls. Treatment condition was significantly associated with perpetration among the minority but not among white adolescents; there was 23 % less violence perpetration among minority adolescents exposed to Safe Dates than that among controls. The observed effect sizes were comparable with those of other universal school-based youth violence prevention programs. Implementing Safe Dates may be an efficient way of preventing multiple types of youth violence.
    Prevention Science 03/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: People who inject drugs (IDU) often rush their injections; however, the prevalence and predictors of rushing during injecting has not been well studied. We sought to identify correlates of rushed injecting among a community-recruited sample of IDU in Bangkok, Thailand. Data were derived from IDU who participated in the Mitsampan Community Research Project in Bangkok between July and October in 2011. Multivariate logistic regression was used to identify the prevalence and factors associated with frequent rushed injecting, defined as rushing injections at least 25 % of the time in the last 6 months. Among 437 participants, 27 % reported frequent rushed injecting. In multivariate analyses, factors positively and independently associated with frequent rushed injecting included: syringe sharing, injecting in public places, and having noticed increased police presence where drugs are bought or used. Many Thai IDU in this setting reported frequent rushed injecting and factors known to increase HIV risk were found to be associated with this behavior. These findings reinforce the need for public health interventions that address the broader social and physical risk environment where drug injecting takes place.
    Prevention Science 03/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: Telomere length (TL) is an indicator of general systemic aging, with diminished TL associated with several chronic diseases of aging and with heightened mortality risk. Research has begun to focus on the ways in which stress contributes to telomere attrition. The purposes of this study were (a) to establish whether exposure to nonsupportive parenting, defined as high levels of conflict and rancor with low levels of warmth and emotional support, at age 17 would forecast TL 5 years later; and (b) to determine whether participation in an efficacious family-centered prevention program could ameliorate any associations that emerged. Rural African American adolescents participated in the Adults in the Making (AIM) program or a control condition. Primary caregivers provided data on nonsupportive parenting during a pretest when adolescents were age 17. Adolescents provided data on anger at the pretest and at a posttest administered 7 months later. When the youths were age 22, TL was assayed from a blood draw. The results indicated that heightened nonsupportive parenting forecast diminished TL among young adults in the control condition but not among those who participated in AIM; socioeconomic status risk, life stress, and the use of alcohol and cigarettes at age 17, and blood pressure and body mass index at age 22, were controlled. Subsequent exploratory analyses suggested that AIM-induced reductions in adolescents' anger served as a mediator connecting group assignment to TL. The results suggest that the cellular-level sequelae of nonsupportive parenting and stress are not immutable.
    Prevention Science 03/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: Minority children living in disadvantaged neighborhoods are at high risk for school dropout, delinquency, and poor health, largely due to the negative impact of poverty and stress on parenting and child development. This study evaluated a population-level, family-centered, school-based intervention designed to promote learning, behavior, and health by strengthening parenting, classroom quality, and child self-regulation during early childhood. Ten schools in urban districts serving primarily low-income Black students were randomly assigned to intervention or a "pre-kindergarten education as usual" control condition. Intervention included a family program (a 13-week behavioral parenting intervention and concurrent group for children) and professional development for early childhood teachers. The majority (88 %) of the pre-kindergarten population (N = 1,050; age 4) enrolled in the trial, and nearly 60 % of parents in intervention schools participated in the family program. This study evaluated intervention impact on parenting (knowledge, positive behavior support, behavior management, involvement in early learning) and child conduct problems over a 2-year period (end of kindergarten). Intent-to-treat analyses found intervention effects on parenting knowledge, positive behavior support, and teacher-rated parent involvement. For the highest-risk families, intervention also resulted in increased parent-rated involvement in early learning and decreased harsh and inconsistent behavior management. Among boys at high risk for problems based on baseline behavioral dysregulation (age 4, 23 % of sample), intervention led to lower rates of conduct problems at age 6. Family-centered intervention at the transition to school has potential to improve population health and break the cycle of disadvantage for low-income, minority families.
    Prevention Science 03/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: Sibling aggression among maltreated children placed in foster homes is linked to other externalizing problems and placement disruption. The reduction of sibling conflict and aggression may be achieved via a multicomponent ecologically focused intervention for families in the foster care system. The focus of the study is to evaluate the feasibility and short-term effectiveness of a transtheoretical intervention model targeting sibling pairs and their foster parent that integrates family systems, social learning theory, and a conflict mediation perspective. In this pilot study, sibling pairs (N = 22) and their foster parent were randomized into a three-component intervention (n = 13) or a comparison (n = 9) group. Promoting Sibling Bonds (PSB) is an 8-week prevention intervention targeting maltreated sibling pairs ages 5-11 years placed together in a foster home. The siblings, parent, and joint components were delivered in a program package at the foster agency by a trained two-clinician team. Average attendance across program components was 73 %. Outcomes in four areas were gathered at pre- and postintervention: observed sibling interaction quality (positive and negative) including conflict during play, and foster parent reports of mediation strategies and sibling aggression in the foster home. At postintervention, adjusting for baseline scores and child age, intervention pairs showed higher positive (p < 0.001) and negative (p < 0.05) interaction quality and lower sibling conflict during play (p < 0.01) than comparison pairs. Foster parents in the intervention group reported a higher number of conflict mediation strategies than those in the comparison group (p < 0.001). Foster parents in the intervention group reported lower sibling physical aggression from the older toward the younger child than those in the comparison group (p < 0.05). Data suggest that the PSB intervention is a promising approach to reduce conflict and promote parental mediation, which together may reduce sibling aggression in the foster home.
    Prevention Science 03/2014;