Community of Hands
May 24, 2018

Congratulations to doctoral candidates in Behavioral and Community Health, Catherine Maybury and Heather Platter on receiving the Rima E. Rudd Fellowship. This fellowship is awarded to doctoral candidates who will conduct research to advance the science of health literacy in their dissertation. 

Ms. Maybury's dissertation is a national survey of third- and fourth- year dental students to understand their perspectives on what is taught in U.S. dental schools relating to communication techniques shown to improve patient understanding and three regimens that are effective in preventing dental caries (tooth decay). This research will contribute to the health literacy research field by helping us understand dental students’ perspectives about the communication techniques and caries preventive regimens taught in dental schools and their knowledge, skills, self-efficacy and intention to use these communication techniques and caries preventive regimens with patients after they graduate. Finding from this research will allow the American Dental Education Association to work for greater emphasis on teaching and evaluating dental students on their abilities to use communication/interpersonal skills and caries preventive regimens, skills necessary for a health literate dental profession. 

Ms. Platter's dissertation is a mixed methods study examining provider communication techniques and knowledge of lung cancer screening guidelines. Her study will also explore barriers to lung cancer screening among older adult long-term smokers at high risk for developing lung cancer. Using a grounded theory methodology, a final theoretical model will be created, which can be applied and tested in future screening interventions.

Related Degree: 
PhD, Behavioral and Community Health