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Qualitative methods to ensure acceptability of behavioral and social interventions to the target population

Authors

  • Guadalupe X. Ayala PhD, MPH,

    Corresponding author
    1. Graduate School of Public Health, San Diego State University, San Diego, CA, and San Diego Prevention Research Center, San Diego, CA
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  • John P. Elder PhD, MPH

    1. Graduate School of Public Health, San Diego State University, San Diego, CA, and San Diego Prevention Research Center, San Diego, CA
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Dr. Guadalupe X. Ayala, Graduate School of Public Health, San Diego State University, 9245 Sky Park Court, Suite 220, San Diego, CA 92123. Tel.: 619-594-6686; Fax: 619-594-2998; e-mail: gayala@projects.sdsu.edu. Guadalupe X. Ayala is with the Graduate School of Public Health, San Diego State University. John P. Elder is with the San Diego Prevention Research Center.

Abstract

Objectives: This paper introduces qualitative methods for assessing the acceptability of an intervention.

Methods: Acceptability refers to determining how well an intervention will be received by the target population and the extent to which the new intervention or its components might meet the needs of the target population and organizational setting. In this paper, we focus on two common qualitative methods for conducting acceptability research and their advantages and disadvantages: focus groups and interviews.

Results: We provide examples from our own research and other studies to demonstrate the use of these methods for conducting acceptability research and how one might adapt this approach for oral health research.

Discussion: We present emerging methods for conducting acceptability research, including the use of community-based participatory research, as well as the utility of conducting acceptability research for assessing the appropriateness of measures in intervention research.

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