Pre-conference workshops – EUSPR 2016

EUSPR will hold four pre-conference workshops on 30th October 2016 as part of it’s 7th Conference which is being held in Berlin, Germany.

1) “Give me the money!”: how to ask for research funding. Full day workshop convened by Kimberley Hill and Angelina Brotherhood, the University of Northampton (UK); University of Vienna (AT)

2) An Introduction to Latent Class Analysis for Prevention Research: Identifying High-Risk Subgroups in the Population. Half day workshop convened by Dr Bethany C. Bray, the Methodology Center, the Pennsylvania State University (USA)

3) An Introduction to the Multiphase Optimization Strategy (MOST) for Building More Effective, Economical, and Sustainable Preventive Interventions. Half day workshop convened by Prof Linda M. Collins, the Methodology Center, the Pennsylvania State University (USA)

4) Introduction to the Universal Prevention Curriculum (UPC). Full day workshop convened by Gregor Burkhart, European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction (EMCDDA) (PT) and Zili Sloboda, Applied Prevention Science International, Inc.

An overview of the workshops can be found below. Places are limited, please book early.

Please note: Workshops 2 and 3 are half day workshops that can be attended separately or consecutively. Workshops 1 and 4 occur concurrently with workshops 2 and 3. Participants attending a full day workshop (including attending both half day workshops, 2 and 3) will receive lunch and two coffee breaks. Participants attending a half day workshop only will receive one coffee break only.

Workshop 1 will take place at the Jugendgästehaus Hauptbahnhof. Lehrter Straße 68, 10557 Berlin. Map, Website

Workshops 2, 3 and 4 will take place a the Hotel Albrechtshof, Albrechtstr. 8, Mitte, 10117 Berlin, Germany. MapWebsite

1) “Give me the money!”: how to ask for research funding

This workshop is intended for early careers participants and is free to attend.

Being able to secure competitive funding is considered crucial in making the “metamorphosis” from “apprentice” to “independent researcher” (Laudel & Gläser 2008), and so should be a topic of key concern to any early-career prevention researcher. Yet early-career researchers may feel unsure where to look for funding or how to apply successfully. This workshop aims to address these questions from a practical and prevention orientated perspective.

The workshop will include three parts:

1. A general overview of funding opportunities for research projects and researcher mobility in the early-career phase, including typical steps for preparing a grant application

2. Practical insights and advice offered by a diverse panel of prevention researchers based on their own experiences of applying for funding

3. Group work activities in which participants will review and discuss real-life examples of grant applications from the prevention field.

Participants will have the opportunity to identify and obtain answers to those questions which are most relevant to them. Through its prevention orientation, the workshop should complement funding workshops that participants may already have access to through their own institutions.

List of confirmed panellists and agenda will be added in due course. For any questions, please contact the facilitators below.

Dr Kimberley Hill is a co-lead of the Early Careers Forum and a Chartered Psychologist. Currently working as a Lecturer in Psychology at The University of Northampton, Kimberley has experience in applying for and obtaining funding for research projects and events.

Angelina Brotherhood is the current early-careers lead on the Board of the EUSPR. She is a doctoral researcher in sociology at the University of Vienna, Austria. Previously she worked at the Centre for Public Health at Liverpool John Moores University, UK, where she also worked on a number of EU co-funded projects. In case of any questions about this workshop, you can email her at

Workshop 1 Programme

2) An Introduction to Latent Class Analysis for Prevention Research: Identifying High-Risk Subgroups in the Population

Latent class analysis (LCA) is similar conceptually to factor analysis but the latent variable is categorical. Recent methodological advances in LCA have resulted in a rapid increase in its application in prevention research. LCA has proven to be a useful tool for identifying qualitatively different population subgroups who may be at varying levels of risk for negative outcomes, or for whom prevention programs may have differential effectiveness.

In LCA, individuals are sorted into mutually exclusive and exhaustive subgroups based on their sets of item responses. LCA uses categorical indicators to identify underlying subgroups in data and estimate their prevalences, while simultaneously adjusting for measurement error. The goal of this half-day, hands-on workshop is to help attendees gain the theoretical background and applied skills to address interesting research questions using LCA. During the workshop, attendees will fit a preliminary model to data provided by the instructor, using the software packages of their choice (i.e., Latent Gold, SAS, Mplus, R), or will be able to follow along without a computer using syntax/output provided by the instructor.

The workshop will include a conceptual introduction to LCA, an empirical example focused on adolescent health behaviours, and information about how to include a grouping variable such as intervention condition. In addition, the instructor will discuss how to expand the model using recent methodological advances to include predictors and outcomes. An open discussion about how LCA might be applied in the research of attendees will be included, as will resources to enable attendees to learn more. Participants will be provided with an electronic copy of all lecture notes, select software syntax/output, and a list of recommended reading for future reference.

Bethany C. Bray, Ph.D., is a Research Associate Professor in the College of Health and Human Development at The Pennsylvania State University in the United States. She is also Associate Director of The Methodology Center, an interdisciplinary research center devoted to the development and dissemination of innovative experimental design and data analysis methods in the social, behavioral, and health sciences. In addition, Dr. Bray serves as Associate Training Director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse-funded T32 Prevention and Methodology Training Program. Her research focuses on the development and application of advanced latent class modeling techniques to questions about the development of alcohol and other substance use, with a special emphasis on its relation to the development of comorbid risk behaviors like gambling and risky sexual behavior. Dr. Bray’s work has been funded through the National Institutes of Health, the Alcohol Beverage Medical Research Foundation, and the National Center for Responsible Gaming, and has been published in a variety of methodological and applied journals, such as Structural Equation Modeling, Methodology, Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs, and Journal of Adolescent Health. Her work has won awards from the National Council on Problem Gambling and the National Center for Responsible Gaming. Dr. Bray has taught graduate-level courses on research methods, psychometrics, and categorical data analysis, as well as hands-on workshops on latent class, latent profile, and latent transition analysis, and programming in SAS and R. She has extensive experience presenting technical material to applied scientists. For more information, visit The Methodology Center’s website at

Workshop 2 Programme

3) An Introduction to the Multiphase Optimization Strategy (MOST) for Building More Effective, Economical, and Sustainable Preventive Interventions

The multiphase optimization strategy (MOST) is a principled methodological framework for development and evaluation of behavioral and biobehavioral preventive interventions.  MOST borrows heavily from approaches used in engineering, and also integrates concepts from statistics and behavioral science. MOST consists of three phases: preparation, optimization, and evaluation.  In the optimization phase of MOST, steps are taken to optimize the intervention based on empirical data.  The goal of the optimization is to meet specific criteria for effectiveness, efficiency, economy, and/or scalability established a priori by the investigator. Once the intervention has been optimized, it is evaluated in a standard randomized controlled trial (RCT).  Because preventive interventions developed using MOST can be optimized for scalability, they have the potential to be highly sustainable.

In this workshop, Dr. Collins will review the preparation, optimization, and evaluation phases of MOST.  She will explain what is meant by an optimization criterion, and will discuss selection of appropriate optimization criteria for use in development of preventive interventions. Highly efficient experimental designs for use in the optimization phase will be discussed.  Discussion will be encouraged throughout the workshop. In particular, time will be set aside for discussion of how MOST can be applied in the research of the attendees.  Participants will be provided with an electronic copy of all lecture notes and a list of recommended reading for future reference.

Linda M. Collins, Ph.D., is Distinguished Professor of Human Development & Family Studies and Professor of Statistics at Pennsylvania State University in the United States.  She is also Director of The Methodology Center, an interdisciplinary research center devoted to the advancement and dissemination of quantitative methods for applications in the behavioral sciences.  Since 1996 she has been Director of a National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)-funded Center of Excellence. She is Director of the NIDA-funded T32 Prevention and Methodology Training Program.  Besides NIDA, other funders of her research have included the National Science Foundation, the National Cancer Institute, the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, and the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases.

Dr. Collins’s research interests include the multiphase optimization strategy (MOST), an engineering-inspired methodological framework for optimizing and evaluating behavioral interventions.  She is currently collaborating on research applying MOST to develop optimized behavioral interventions in the areas of smoking cessation, weight loss, prevention of sexually transmitted infections, and HIV services. Her peer-review publications have appeared in a wide range of outlets, including methodological journals such as Psychological Methods, substance use journals such as Nicotine and Tobacco Research, behavioral journals such as Annals of Behavioral Medicine, and engineering journals such as IEEE Transactions on Control Systems Technology.  Dr. Collins is a Fellow of the American Psychological Association, the Association for Psychological Science, the Society of Behavioral Medicine, and the Society for Prevention Research.  She is a past president of the Society of Multivariate Experimental Psychology and the Society for Prevention Research.  

Workshop 3 Agenda

4) Introduction to the Universal Prevention Curriculum (UPC)

The intent of the Universal Prevention Curriculum program is to provide training to prevention professionals that focuses on prevention science and its application to evidence-based prevention interventions and policies. Although the current focus is on substance use prevention, the curriculum materials have implications for the prevention of violence, and, delinquency and crime.  The UPC addresses critical theories for prevention, the etiology of behavioral problems that focuses on individual vulnerability and the influence of micro- and macro-level environments, professional competencies and skills as well as ethics.  It draws heavily on the UNODC International Standards for Drug Use Prevention, the EMCDDA’s European Drug Prevention Quality Standards, and the U.S. Society for Prevention Research’s Standards of Knowledge for the Science of Prevention.

UPC is composed of two series. The first is designed for decision makers or planners of prevention programming at the local, regional or national levels, the Coordinators Series, that is very content and knowledge focused.  The Series includes a one-week Introduction to Prevention Science and 8 specialty curricula that range from 3 days to 6 days in length: Physiology and Pharmacology for Prevention Professionals, Monitoring and Evaluation of Prevention Interventions and Policies, Family-Based Prevention Interventions, School-Based Prevention Interventions and Policies, Workplace-Based Prevention Interventions and Policies, Environment-Based Prevention Interventions and Policies, Media-Based Prevention Interventions, and, Community-Based Prevention Implementations Systems.

The second series is designed for prevention intervention and policy implementers.  The focus is similar to the Coordinators Series with an Introduction to Prevention Science and specialty tracks relating to each of the settings (family, school, workplace, environment, and media) and to monitoring and evaluation and to community implementation systems.  Although a knowledge foundation is presented, this series is mostly devoted to the application of knowledge to the implementation of evidence-based prevention interventions and policies, with specific emphasis on skills building exercises and activities all designed to provide an understanding as to why fidelity to the content, structure, and delivery of manualized prevention interventions and policies is extremely important to the success of these interventions and policies as well as to their sustainability. Series two courses range from 10-15 weeks of training plus the completion and evaluation of up to three practica.

The workshop will present the basis for the UPC, a discussion of prevention science and its application to evidence-based prevention interventions and policies, as well as highlighting the key theories of human behavior and learning, and, some of the major aspects of each of the specialty content areas and a discussion of the roles, function, and competencies of the prevention professionals that differentiate them from professionals in related fields.

Zili Sloboda, President of Applied Prevention Science International, was trained in mental health and epidemiology at the Johns Hopkins University. The majority of her research has been related to the delivery of health-related services to youth and adults and epidemiology. She is an expert on the prevention of substance use by adolescents and has broad experience in research related to at-risk youth and to the evaluation of treatment and prevention programs. She has served on the faculty at Johns Hopkins University now the Bloomberg School of Public Health, the University of Illinois School of Public Health, and The University of Akron. Dr. Sloboda also worked for twelve years at the National Institute on Drug Abuse in several capacities, finally as the Director of the Division of Epidemiology and Prevention Research. She was a founder of the U.S. and E.U. Societies for Prevention Research and is well-published in the area of substance use epidemiology and prevention.  Her three major books include the Handbook of Drug Abuse Prevention, Epidemiology of Drug Abuse, and Defining Prevention Science. Her current focus is on developing and testing the Universal Prevention Curriculum designed for the training of an international cadre of prevention professionals in collaboration with The Colombo Plan and the International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs Bureau of the U.S. Department of State. Through this program prevention professionals from Asia, Africa, Latin America, the United States, Canada, and Europe will be trained and licensed to deliver evidence-based substance use prevention interventions.

Workshop 4 programme