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Article Title

Beyond the Publishable Paper: Finding the Story in Your Research

Publication Date

8-15-2016

Keywords

story, community-based participatory research

Abstract

Background/Aims: “Beyond the Publishable Paper: Finding the Story in Your Research” was a workshop developed by the Colorado Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute Partnership of Academicians and Community for Translation to inspire the research community to think beyond journal publication as a means for translating and disseminating research findings. Aimed at attracting researchers, community research partners (present or in the future), health sciences students and trainees, the workshop objectives were to: a) demonstrate how the arts can be incorporated into the translation and dissemination process of research; b) identify elements of a good story; c) guide participants in creating a story from research results; d) identify strategies for sharing research results through storytelling; and e) practice performance art for storytelling.

Methods: The 3-hour interactive, hands-on workshop taught participants the art of effective storytelling by kicking off with a performance of Loose Change, a research-based theatrical production developed from a Care Equity Project by Kaiser Permanente Colorado’s Arts Integrated Resources Team. After learning about the elements of good storytelling, participants broke into groups and developed stories based on research findings in the two-page “Middle School Overview of 2013 Data” reported by Healthy Kids Colorado Survey. The workshop finale was a 5-minute performance by one of the groups illustrating the story they saw in the middle school data on “unintentional injury and violence.”

Results: Participant postevaluation of the workshop was positive: a) The majority of respondents agreed or strongly agreed the workshop was a valuable use of their time (18 of 20); b) Most (15 of 20) thought the workshop was somewhat or very relevant to their work; and c) Holding the workshop in a community space, Su Teatro Cultural and Performing Arts Center, Denver, rather than on campus, supported participant learning and was worth additional effort to get there (17 of 20 respondents agreed or strongly agreed).

Conclusion: The workshop successfully modeled performance art as a tool for research dissemination, outlined a format for drawing stories out of data and provided hands-on practice in story development, theatrical performance and sharing.

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