Abstract| Volume 50, ISSUE 7, SUPPLEMENT , S165, July 2018

Relationship Between Educator Experience and Participant Outcomes in a Cancer Prevention Educational Intervention

      Background (Background, Rationale, Prior Research, and/or Theory): The Cooking for a Lifetime (C4L) Cancer Prevention Cooking School educates women on nutrition and physical activity (PA) for cancer prevention and screening guidelines for breast, cervical, and colorectal cancer. All agents undergo the same program training, but the relationship between Extension agent characteristics and participant outcomes has not been explored.
      Objective: To explore the relationship of educator (Extension Agent) characteristics (years of experience with Extension, the county, the program) and C4L participant outcomes (intention to meet cancer preventive nutrition and PA guidelines).
      Study Design, Setting, Participants, Intervention: C4L is a 2.5-hr Extension educational intervention designed to improve intention to get screened for cancer and implement cancer preventive nutrition and PA behaviors among women ages 21 to 65.
      Outcome Measures and Analysis: Educator characteristics were assessed via phone interview and explored as categorical variables (i.e. < 5, 5 – 9, 10+). Participant demographics and intention to meet guidelines before and after the intervention (Likert type scale 1 – 5: 1 “Not at all likely” to 5 “Extremely likely”) were assessed using a researcher-designed, retrospective questionnaire. Changes in intention to meet guidelines were assessed with Wilcoxon signed rank tests. Relationships between agent characteristics and changes in intention were explored with Wilcoxon-Mann-Whitney and Kruskal-Wallis tests.
      Results: Participants (n = 116) were 100% female, 51.6 + /- 11 y, 61% African American, 16% Hispanic, and 92% had at least a high school education. Intention to meet all nutrition and PA guidelines improved from pre- to post-intervention (all P < .001). Preliminary analyses suggest no differences in change in intention to meet guidelines based on agent characteristics.
      Conclusions and Implications: Initial results suggest participant outcomes are not associated with educator experience. Thus, program training and materials may be sufficient for successful implementation, but further analyses are needed to confirm these results considering other variables that may influence outcomes (e.g. participant education).
      Funding: American Cancer Society.