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Best Practices for Developing Fundable Behavioral Interventions Leveraging Human-Centered Design

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You have the ideas, now how do you develop and advance them through the research pipeline? We will use human-centered design principles to provide feedback and framing to maximize successful development and funding of your behavioral intervention. This hybrid program is designed for faculty, clinical researchers, post-doctoral fellows, and advanced graduate students from diverse health and social science backgrounds. Individuals from all institutions are encouraged to apply.

Faculty, clinical researchers, post-doctoral fellows, and advanced graduate students new to the field of intervention research will learn to apply an in-depth understanding of the best practices in developing, funding, testing, and implementing a non-pharmacological behavioral research intervention. Through asynchronous online modules and two half-day, live virtual sessions, learners will have the opportunity to workshop study design, selection of a control group, recruitment techniques, and how to scale behavioral interventions and engage with community stakeholders through an application of human-centered design principles.

Due to the global COVID-19-pandemic, we are moving our in-person session to two half-day, interactive virtual sessions. These sessions will be held on June 8 and 9, 2020 from 1-4:30 pm. All content will be delivered remotely via video conferencing. Collaboration tools and small breakout sessions will be used to maximize interactivity and engagement with the instructors and other participants.

  • The Objectives

    Learners will be able to:

    • Understand the continuum of intervention research from discovery and efficacy to implementation and sustainability
    • Identify delivery characteristics to advance an intervention protocol with implementation potential
    • Examine how and when to involve community and practice-based partners
    • Advance trial design including measurement, control groups, fidelity, and cost analyses
    • Understand principles of grant writing for behavioral intervention research
    • Understand how human-centered design principles can be used to enhance development and implementation of behavioral interventions
  • The Format
    • There are two formats.  Online only or online plus in-person
    • Online training is offered “on-demand” (self-paced), asynchronous format
    • Learners review online video lectures and content during which they independently complete accompanying worksheets
    • After completing the videos, learners can choose to participate in a live session (additional fee). Due to the global COVID-19-pandemic, we are moving our usual one day in-person session to two half-day, interactive virtual sessions. These sessions will be held on June 8 and 9, 2020 from 1-4:30 pm.   
  • Who should register to attend?

    Clinical researchers, faculty, pre-and post-doctoral students, and other investigators who seek to develop and advance a particular intervention to enhance the health and well-being of individuals, their family members, and/or communities. Project or program managers and other research staff seeking to contribute to the development and evaluation of meaningful interventions are also encouraged to apply.

  • The Module Details

    1. Behavioral interventions matter

    a. Welcome and overview of course


    1. What is the pipeline for developing and advancing behavioral interventions?

    a. Reviews different pipelines and outlines steps for starting behavioral intervention research

    2. Theory as a practical tool for developing interventions

    a. Examines the importance of theory and explores its role as one develops and evaluates an intervention

    3. Designing delivery characteristics of an intervention

    a. Considers the range of delivery characteristics and modes (e.g., online, in-person) for delivering an intervention

    4. What is design thinking?

    a. Introduces design thinking principles and how to leverage them in developing an intervention


    5. Assuring Fidelity to the Intervention

    a. Examines the issues of fidelity and presents different strategies for assuring that the delivery of an intervention is as intended

    6. Randomized Trial Designs

    a. Describes different randomized trial designs and which work best for the different stages of an intervention’s development

    7. Exemplars of study design and controls groups

    a. Provides real life examples of study designs and different control groups

    8. Value of Mixed Methods in Behavioral Intervention Research

    a. Examines the role of mixed methods in intervention research

    9. Mediators and Moderators

    a. Discusses mediation and moderator analyses and how to apply these approaches to understand and advance interventions

    10. Selecting Control Groups for Randomized Controlled Trials

    a. Examines the important role of control groups, the range of control groups available and considerations in selecting a control group at each stage of an intervention development


    11. Recruitment and Retention: Challenges and Solutions for Hard-to-Reach Participants

    a. Identifies common challenges in recruiting and retaining study participants and provides recommendations

    12. How and when do you involve community and practice-based partners

    a. Examines the role of community partners and effective ways of involving partners in behavioral intervention research

    13. Involving diverse populations in clinical trials – what does it take?

    a. Identifies strategies for reaching out to diverse populations underrepresented in clinical trials and examines the role and value of community health workers as behavioral interventionists


    14. Costing an intervention

    a. Identifies cost components of an intervention, examines methodologies for assigning cost to each intervention component and helps learners derive a preliminary cost of an intervention

    15. Diffusion Confusion: What it Takes to Scale interventions

    a. Discusses ways to scale an intervention and identifies the challenges of widespread diffusion

    16. Grant Writing Considerations

    a. Understand specific considerations for an intervention grant application

Testimonials From Former Onsite Summer Research Institute Participants

“Amazing program. The intellectual powerhouse at the program was evident. Everyone was approachable and appeared interested in advancing my intervention learning process”

“The greatest benefits of the face-to-face program to me were the personalized feedback on my project, building relationships with both peers and mentors with common goals and concerns, and going through the entire process, from idea building to data collection, to grant getting and get the work published…”

“The program gave me the leverage to take my research to the next level.”

“I learned so much about how to put together a grant application and subsequently an interventional project.”

“The face-to-face was a tremendous opportunity to interact with other beginning researchers from an amazing variety of disciplines – although our research areas were quite different, we shared surprisingly similar challenges.”

“This is a well-organized training program. I would love to recommend other colleagues”

Register for Online Session

2-day Virtual Sessions: June 8-9, 2020 from 1 PM – 4:30 PM EST

Register for June 8-9

Learners will have access to the videos for two years from date of purchase.

Email to inquire about cost of training if you are seeking training as part of PhD or other doctoral level program in a classroom setting.


Issues with accessing training:
Executive Education


*$800 for videos lectures

*$400 for 2-day virtual sessions

*completion of video lectures is mandatory prerequisite for participation 
*Must apply online for consideration

Eligible for JHU Tuition Remission