• recruitment;
  • retention;
  • clinical trial;
  • college;
  • smoking cessation


Techniques to recruit and retain college fraternity and sorority members who reported past 30-day smoking into a cessation trial are described. Recruitment efforts included relationship-building, raffles, and screening survey administration during existing meetings. Surveys were administered to 76% (n = 3,276) of members in 30 chapters, 79% of eligible members agreed to participate, and 76% of those completed assessments and were enrolled in the trial (n = 452). The retention rate was 73%. Retention efforts included cash incentives, flexible scheduling, multiple reminders, chapter incentives, and use of chapter members as study personnel. Retention was not related to demographic, behavioral, or group characteristics. The strategies of partnership, convenience, and flexibility appear effective and may prove useful to investigators recruiting similar samples. © 2010 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Res Nurs Health 33:144–155, 2010