A survey of prevention science training: Implications for educating the next generation

J. Mark Eddy, Paula Smith, C. Hendricks Brown, John B. Reid

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Several reviews of the emerging, transdisciplinary field of prevention science have identified the need for improved and expanded training of researchers as one of the central issues facing the field. A starting place for such an endeavor is an assessment of the current state of training. In that regard, we queried several groups of researchers about training in the prevention of mental disorders and closely related areas. Training experts from federally funded prevention intervention research and training centers were interviewed regarding the content of existing and ideal prevention science training programs. Based on these interviews and a literature search, we identified 13 content areas for prevention training. Through an internet-based survey, we interviewed trainees, early career researchers, and established researchers on their knowledge of and training in these areas. There was no content area in which the majority of early career researchers had a high level of training or knowledge. In contrast, the majority of established researchers were highly knowledgeable about each of six content areas that have represented the "traditional" areas of training in prevention science for the past several decades. Early career researchers had particularly low levels of knowledge and training in the history of prevention research and practice, how to obtain funding for prevention research, and how to conduct economic analyses. Implications of the findings for the education of the next cohort of prevention researchers are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)59-71
Number of pages13
JournalPrevention Science
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 1 2005
Externally publishedYes


  • Career development
  • Education
  • Graduate
  • Postgraduate
  • Prevention science
  • Public health
  • Training

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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