Enhancing dissemination in selective eating disorders prevention: An investigation of voluntary participation among female university students

Melissa Atkinson, Tracey Wade

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    18 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    Maximising dissemination of efficacious psychological interventions is an important undertaking, particularly in prevention work where the target population may not be seeking help. Consequently, the current study investigated voluntary participation in a selective eating disorder prevention programme by examining predictors of, and evaluating a motivational enhancement approach to, increased participation. Female students studying first-year psychology (N=124, Mage=19.30, SD=1.55) completed baseline measures, were randomised to a motivational or control condition, then presented with a flyer for an eating disorders prevention trial and assessed regarding potential participation. Results showed that interest and likelihood of participation were low overall and lack of time the most commonly endorsed reason. Participants high on weight concerns were more likely to cite the group format of the intervention as a deterrent. A greater belief in the helpfulness of body image programmes and higher personal ineffectiveness were significant predictors of interest in participation. There was no significant difference between those who did and did not undergo the motivational enhancement with respect to interest and likelihood of participation. These findings suggest important avenues for consideration when designing eating disorder prevention efforts relying on voluntary participation, and highlight the importance of evaluating programmes cross-culturally.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)806-816
    Number of pages11
    JournalBehaviour Research and Therapy
    Volume51
    Issue number12
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - Dec 2013

    Keywords

    • Dissemination
    • Eating disorders
    • Effectiveness research
    • Participation
    • Prevention interventions

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