The need for translational research, as well as translation of research, is well-established within the scientific community. While traditionally associated with the medical sciences, translational research is also quickly becoming a priority in behavioral and social sciences as well. As such, dissemination of the Spit for Science findings isn’t limited solely to academic journals or research conferences; they are also translated into coursework, programming and a variety of media content, all of which extend our reach to a broader audience.
One example of the translation of the Spit for Science data is monthly contributions to the Stall Seat Journal, a monthly publication produced by The Wellness Resource Center at VCU. The SSJ is placed in 1300 restrooms across both the Monroe Park and MCV campuses to bring students the latest information about to how to stay healthy, ranging from low-risk drinking and bystander engagement to social norms and recovery services. According to The Well’s 2016 Spring Health Survey, 90% of students read some of all of the Stall Seat Journal, providing a direct connection to promote research-based health and wellness information and practices to students, faculty and staff on campus (Spring 2016, n=856).
We also offer the Spit for Science Undergraduate Research Course, a hands-on class that teaches students how to use the S4S data to answer their own research questions. Students then have the opportunity to present their projects at the annual Undergraduate Student Research Fair and to publish their findings in VCU’s Scholars Compass. Student projects from this class have been downloaded from viewers around the world.
A more detailed description of translational courses and activities that build on the Spit for Science research can be found on the COBE Coursework page while information about other forms of translation media can be found on the COBE Resources page.