We hope these tools and resources will strengthen engagement practices and identify new practices that help us all reduce health inequities and reach our own goals. We urge you to use or adapt these tools so your partnership can creatively grow. We appreciate that self and collective evaluation can be challenging, and thank you for engaging in this effort.
Using Tools and Resources
The tools and resources presented here provide a step-by-step approach for research partnerships to examine where they are now and where they want to be in the future. By clicking on each octagon in a clockwise manner, you can review tools in each step. We understand that each collaboration has different needs and priorities. You may find some tools more useful than others, and you may want to skip a step. Each octagon contains a short description; and an interactive exercise or tool, such as survey instruments or a template to guide conversation. Some have short videos that provide instruction. Examples show how other partnerships have benefited from using the tool.
Claiming Your Principles
Identifying shared core values and principles is key to building trust and synergy in a partnership. We provide an exercise to help you identify the personal values you each bring to research partnerships, your shared values, and then provide literature on classic CBPR principles that allows you to compare your own values.
Creating your Partnership River of Life
The River of Life is a reflective tool that helps you describe the history of your partnership or engaged-research project, and how this life journey has shaped where your partnership is now. In this exercise, you will document critical moments of your partnership’s history that direct you towards your future work. With this tool you will reflect on:
- History and influences that motivate partners to work together.
- The goals, processes, and results of your partnerships’ work.
Visioning with the CBPR Model
The CBPR Model provides a logic model or storyline for how partnering and community engagement can transform research to better serve communities. The Workbook Guide explains how to use the Model as a visioning tool to identify your own outcomes and the partnering practices you are using to get there. The Guide explains how to:
- Adapt the Model to your own circumstances and community context
- Use the Model to plan a new research project
- Evaluate your existing partnership practices
- Assess the impact of your practices on your desired outcomes.
Expanding Community Engaged Surveys to More Partners
Here are links to the online interactive Community Engaged Survey if you would like other partners in your project to fill it out. The survey contains psychometrically-validated scales with measures that follow the domains of the CBPR model: context, partnering processes, intervention and research design constructs, and intermediate and long-term outcomes. With additional partner data, you will receive an Excel output of your own partnerships’ aggregated data to analyze and compare with the Promising Practices Guide (see final Octagon).
Adding Interviews and Focus Groups to Your Reflection
Interview and focus group guides can provide additional understandings of what is working well and what the challenges are in your partnership. If you decide this would be helpful, you can interview a few key stakeholders, and/or conduct a focus group at a regular partnership meeting or at an annual retreat.
Reflecting on Your Own Partnership Data
The Partnership Data Report provides an opportunity to review your own partnership’s data from the Community Engaged Survey, and use the data to reflect on your current practices. Questions then ask you to reflect on what you’re doing well or what you’d like to improve to help you reach desired outcomes.
Using Promising Practices Guide
This Guide provides ~20 promising practices identified from national surveys of ~350 federally-funded academic-community partnerships. These practices have been associated with intermediate and long-term research and health outcomes. You can use this Guide to compare aspects of your partnership to partnerships across the nation. It may show you areas of your own partnership that are very well developed relative to national benchmarks, and areas that you may want to strengthen. Each partnership has its own priorities and values, so we hope you use the Guide simply as a way to reflect on and strengthen your own work.