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Educational Programs That Work - 1995

Stanford Adolescent Heart Health Curriculum

Stanford Adolescent Heart Health Curriculum. A multiple-factor cardiovascular disease risk reduction/prevention curriculum for adolescents. Lifestyle factors such as cigarette smoking, diet, physical activity, and stress are targeted.

Audience Approved by PEP for students in grades 9 and 10.

Description The Stanford Adolescent Heart Health Curriculum is guided by social-cognitive theory and emphasizes self-regulatory skill development, building perceptions of self-efficacy, and social pressure resistance training. The curriculum consists of 16 classroom sessions, each lasting 50 minutes. It is divided into five component modules, Tobacco Use Prevention/Cessation, Physical Activity, Nutrition, Stress and Coping, and Personal Problem Solving, with the last module focused on intensive behavioral change. Each module provides students with: (1) information on the effects of different health practices; (2) normative information on the prevalence of unhealthy behaviors among peers; (3) cognitive and behavioral skills enabling them to change personal behavior; (4) specific skills for resisting social influences to adopt unhealthful habits; and (5) practice in using skills to improve performance. The curriculum features slide and music-slide presentations for most lessons, guided role-playing simulations, an introductory videodrama focused on personal choices and consequences, discussion sessions, and personal change student notebooks.

Evidence of Effectiveness Students participating in the program make significantly greater gains in knowledge of cardiovascular disease risk factors on program-developed and validated criterion-referenced tests; show beneficial physiologic/anthropometric effects in terms of resting heart rate, triceps skinfold thickness, and subscapular skinfold thickness; and are more likely to report that they would choose heart healthy snack items than a comparison group. A higher proportion of baseline "nonexercisers" participating in the program are classified as regular aerobic exercisers two months after completion of the curriculum; and more baseline "experimental smokers" participating in the program report quitting at follow-up and fewer report graduating to regular smoking than their comparison group counterparts.

Requirements Materials include a teacher guide, curriculum slides, introductory videodrama, and student handbook master. A computerized teacher training program with supplemental materials is available. Fifteen hours to complete the computerized training program and 45 minutes to prepare for each lesson are required.

Costs Start-up costs are $675 for equipment and $1000 for materials and supplies. An optional cost of $1400 for a Macintosh Classic with a computerized teacher training program and supplemental materials may be incurred.

Services In addition to training and curriculum materials, support materials for dissemination are available.

Joel D. Killen, Ph.D., Stanford Center for Research in Disease Prevention, Stanford University School of Medicine, 1000 Welch Road, Palo Alto, CA 94304-1885. (415) 723-1000.

Developmental Funding: National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute.
PEP No. 91-19 (3/28/91)


[SPARK: Sports, Play, and Active Recreation For Kids] [Table of Contents] [Teenage Health Teaching Modules (THTM)]