Awards ceremony for local schools who participated in our e-cigarette study

We held an awards ceremony to thank Schools for their participation in our research, which highlighted that teenagers in Britain who have tried e-cigarettes are more likely to have tried cigarettes.

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As you may have already seen, some of our research into e-cigarette smoking has been widely covered in the media over the last couple of weeks both locally and nationally, including BBC Radio 4 TodayBBC Newsbeat Mail OnlineMetro and Reuters as well as some of our local press which has included BBC Look North Breakfast and BBC Leeds. 

Since our research has received so much recognition, we wanted to highlight some of the project, and the subsequent awards ceremony for the schools that participated after the research had been completed earlier this year. 

Presentation of Award: “Ambassador for Health Research in Schools”

An awards ceremony took place in the School of Psychology on 8th March 2017 to celebrate a highly successful, four year research collaboration between 20 local high schools and researchers in the department.

45 secondary schools, 20 in Leeds and 25 in Staffordshire, have been part of a joint project between the University of Leeds and Staffordshire University which tested a classroom-based intervention to reduce smoking initiation in young people. Around 7,000 students have been involved in the cluster randomised trial since they were Year 7 students, right through to Year 10, during which time they took part in eight smoking prevention lessons (or eight homework boosting lessons if they were randomised to the control condition).

The smoking prevention intervention involved trained teachers delivering a 50 minute lesson which comprised (1) persuasive messages to boost students’ motivation to not smoke (or complete homework for control condition schools) (2) the completion of a personalised plan about smoking (or homework) – i.e. “If I’m offered a cigarette, then I will do/say X”. The intervention was structured around Gollwitzer’s (1999) implementation intentions approach, a self-regulatory strategy found to be very effective in helping people reach health goals and develop positive habits.

As the four year cluster randomised controlled trial drew to an end in March this year, participating schools were invited to attend a presentation evening, where they were awarded with an A4 silver, acrylic personalised plaque commemorating their valuable contribution to health research. A member of each partnership school’s leadership team and student representatives attended the event, which was opened by Dr Peter Gardner who thanked them for their outstanding support for the research. The awards were presented by Professor Mark Conner who led the trial and we also had press coverage in the Yorkshire Post. It was a great opportunity to thank everyone for their support and commitment to such an important research area – preventing young people smoking.

Some comments from schools who attended the event:

Guiseley School “Thanks also for allowing me the opportunity of attending your evening of celebration.  It certainly was a lovely event and something we as a school feel very privileged to have been involved in”.

Temple Moor High School “The plaque is already up in reception you'll be glad to hear too which looks great! Thank you on behalf of everyone at Temple Moor”.

Once again, we would like to thank all the schools for taking part in the research study over the past four years.


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