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Community-Based Participatory Research Training

Community-Based Participatory Research (CBPR) is a collaborative approach to research that involves community members or recipients of interventions during all phases of the research process and recognizes the unique strengths that each member of the research team brings.

This free course, sponsored by the UR CTSI and Center for Community Health & Prevention, aims to train University of Rochester researchers (faculty, trainees and students) and community members in community-engaged research. It introduces CBPR principles from the foundations, to communication, funding and sustainability and fosters relationship-building among participants. Through the program, participants will form collaborative teams to develop and submit proposals for the CBPR Pipeline to Pilot Awards.

Program Objectives

By the end of the program, participants will:

  • Understand the rationale for a CBPR approach in addressing health research.
  • Describe the conceptual and philosophical roots of community-based participatory health research.
  • Understand and apply the core principles of CBPR in developing, maintaining and evaluating community-academic research partnerships.
  • Evaluate the importance of governance structure, cultural humility, and participatory evaluation in the design and implementation of CBPR as strategies to address power dynamics and ethical issues appropriately.
  • Explain and experience the process and challenges of forming and maintaining CBPR partnerships with communities.
  • Assess the ethical challenges in co-conducting research with communities.
  • Identify and discuss the benefits and challenges involved in CBPR and options for overcoming these challenges.
  • Explore CBPR as a strategy to address social justice, policy or systems-change issues.

When and Where

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we are unable to facilitate the CBPR program September 2020 - April 2021. We plan to resume for September 2021 – April 2022. Please contact Laura Sugarwala if you are interested in learning more about the program and participation.

Course Schedule

Date/Time Session Facilitator Objectives
5:30 – 7:30 p.m.
Intro dinner    
5:30 – 8:00 p.m.

1. CBPR – Getting Grounded

Sherita Bullock
  • Understand the rationale and key principles of CBPR
5:30 – 6:30 p.m.
  Indrani Singh
  • Getting to know each other as people
  • Establishing group norms
  • What skills/abilities do we bring to CBPR partnerships
5:30 – 8:00 p.m.

2. CBPR in the Real World – What’s a Good Research Question?

Jose Perez- Ramos and community partner
  • What hinders trust in CBPR partnerships?
  • How do we build and maintain trust?
5:30 – 6:30 p.m.
  Indrani Singh
  • Building trust for the group
  • Assumptions about the group
  • Learn strategies for collaborative listening and speaking.
5:30 – 8:00 p.m.

3. Developing a CBPR Partnership – Creating the “Glue” for Relationship Building

Brooke Levandowski and Tiffany Lloyd
  • How can we resolve conflict?
  • How do we address power inequities?
5:30 – 6:30 p.m.
  Indrani Singh Exploring group dynamics:
  • How will the group resolve conflict?
  • How do power dynamics play out in the group?
  • Explore implicit bias and privilege.
5:30 – 8:00 p.m.

4. Maintaining a CBPR Partnership – Spreading the “Glue” and Having it Stick

Sarah Farash Alexander
  • Explore goodness of fit for the partnership based on shared values
  • Discuss effective strategies for establishing principles and operating norms for the partnership
5:30 – 6:30 p.m.
  Indrani Singh
  • Revisit group norms – are we actually abiding by these? Do we need to make any changes?
  • What are our group values?
5:30 – 8:00 p.m.

5. Applying a CBPR approach through the entire research process/cycle

Diane Morse and Karen Rogers
  • What are issues to think about in research design for CBPR
  • How do we include community and collaboration into the whole research process?
5:30 – 6:30 p.m.
  Indrani Singh The art of communication:
  • Verbalizing opinions and feelings in a group
  • Listening to and acknowledging different viewpoints
  • Making requests and responding effectively to criticism
5:30 – 8:00 p.m.

6. Disseminating Results of CBPR

Dr. Charles Kamen and Margarita
  • Learn strategies for disseminating CBPR results to multiple target audiences
  • Map pathways for dissemination research results
5:30 – 6:30 p.m.
  Indrani Singh TBD as needed by group
5:30 – 8:00 p.m.

7. Sustainability

Lori DeWindt and Jenna Stewardson (National Center for Deaf Health Research)
  • Participatory, formative evaluation for improving and sustaining partnerships
  • Effective strategies for weathering change
5:30 – 6:30 p.m.
  John Cullen and Laura Sugarwala
  • Complete a timeline for moving forward
  • Identify means for on-going communication
Wednesday, 1/29/20
5:30 – 8:00 p.m.

Follow-up with sessions/workshops every two weeks:

8. Show Me the Money Trail – Securing and Distributing Funds

George Moses and Dr. Silvia Sorensen along with other grant writers
  • Identify funding resources for CBPR and your partnership
  • Develop criteria to decide whether or not to respond to a given request for proposals
  • Learn the fundamentals of grant writing
  • Learn and practice strategies for collaboratively developing a CBPR proposal
  • Understand CBPR approach to budgeting for grants
  • Plan for accountability and reporting
  • Learn strategies for securing long-term funding

Past Graduates and Projects


Collaborating with Caregivers: Factors that Influence the Decision to Begin Mental Health Treatment for Children in Urban Communities
Aparajita “Tuma” Kuriyan, Ph.D., postdoctoral fellow of Psychiatry at URMC; Alicia Evans, independent community consultant with LeGray Dynamic; and Carlos Santana, community organizer for Action for a Better Community, Inc.

The Prevalence of Loneliness in Minority Communities with Chronic Medical Conditions
Allen Anandarajah, M.D., associate professor of Allergy, Immunology & Rheumatology at URMC; Nancy Shelton, senior consultant of Cultural Competence and Health Equity at Coordinated Care Services, Inc.; and Angela Wollschlager, community outreach project lead and patient engagement specialist at Medical Solutions, Inc.

Faith-based Interventions to Support Health-Promoting Behaviors and Reduce Overweight and Obesity Rates in African American Families
Ruth Brook Wards, Aenon Baptist Church, and Kaydean Harris, RN, School of Nursing

Other graduates included: Ms. Jean Clark and Caroline Silva, Ph.D.