Toward the data-driven dissemination of findings from psychological science.

Jonathan Purtle, Jacob S. Marzalik, Raquel W. Halfond, Lynn F. Bufka, Bethany A. Teachman, Gregory A. Aarons

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The public health impact of psychological science is maximized when it is disseminated clearly and compellingly to audiences who can act on it. Dissemination research can generate knowledge to help achieve this, but dissemination is understudied in the field of implementation science. As a consequence, the designs of dissemination strategies are typically driven by anecdote, not evidence, and are often ineffective. We address this issue by synthesizing key theory and findings from consumer psychology and detailing a novel research approach for “data-driven dissemination.” The approach has 3 parts: (a) formative audience research, which characterizes an audience’s awareness about, adoption of, and attitudes toward an intervention, as well as preferences for receiving information about it; (b) audience segmentation research, which identifies meaningful subgroups within an audience to inform the tailoring of dissemination strategies; and (c) dissemination effectiveness research, which determines the strategies that are most effective. This approach is then illustrated using the dissemination of the American Psychological Association’s (APA, 2017) Clinical Practice Guideline for the Treatment of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) in Adults as a case study. Data are presented from a 2018–2019 survey of licensed APA-member psychologists who treat adults with PTSD (n = 407, response rate = 29.8%). We present survey findings on awareness about, attitudes toward, and adoption of the guideline and find significant differences across these domains between psychologists who do and do not regularly use clinical practice guidelines. We conclude by discussing future directions to advance dissemination research and practice. (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2020 APA, all rights reserved)<strong xmlns:lang="en">Public Significance Statement—Dissemination is understudied in the field of implementation science and there is little guidance about how dissemination research should be conducted. As a consequence, the designs of dissemination strategies are typically driven by anecdote, not evidence. We address this issue by detailing a 3-part research approach for “data-driven dissemination.” (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2020 APA, all rights reserved)

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1052-1066
Number of pages15
JournalAmerican Psychologist
Volume75
Issue number8
DOIs
StatePublished - 2020

Keywords

  • clinical practice guidelines
  • dissemination research methods
  • implementation science
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • Psychology
  • Male
  • Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic/psychology
  • Information Dissemination
  • Adult
  • Female
  • Health Care Surveys
  • Practice Guidelines as Topic

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology(all)

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