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Keywords:

  • youth engagement;
  • adolescent health;
  • community based;
  • knowledge transfer;
  • participatory research methods

Abstract

Integrating the expertise and perspectives of adolescents in the process of generating and translating research knowledge into practice is often missed, yet is essential for designing and implementing programs to promote adolescent health. This paper describes the use of the arts-based participatory Visual Voices method in translational research. Visual Voices involves systematic creative writing, drawing, and painting activities to yield culturally relevant information which is generated by and examined with adolescents. Qualitative data products include the created artistic products and transcripts from group discussions of the content developed and presented. Data are analyzed and compared across traditional (e.g., transcripts) and nontraditional (e.g., drawings and paintings) media. Findings are reviewed and interpreted with participants and shared publicly to stimulate community discussions and local policy and practice changes. Visual Voices is a novel method for involving adolescents in translational research though Integrated Knowledge Transfer (IKT), a process for bringing researchers and stakeholders together from the stage of idea generation to implementing evidence-based initiatives. Clin Trans Sci 2013; Volume 6: 72–77