North Texas Daily

Upcoming project to analyze effectiveness of message deliveries

Upcoming project to analyze effectiveness of message deliveries

March 07
19:27 2013

Melissa Wylie / Senior Staff Writer

Victor Prybutok, associate dean at the Toulouse Graduate School, is putting together a team of undergraduates to determine the best method of conveying an anti-binge drinking message.

The students will use a traditional method, such as a YouTube video prepared by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and create their own video and cartoon with the same message. The responses of college-aged audiences to both mediums will be compared, Prybutok said.

“What we’re trying to do is figure out what is most effective, not just for you to learn it, but most interesting so that it then goes viral and suddenly it has an influence,” Prybutok said.

The new project was created with undergraduates in mind, he said, because admittance into graduate school is becoming more reliant on previous research.

“I wanted a vehicle to engage undergraduate students in research,” Prybutok said. “I want them to be involved from start to finish in everything.”

Prybutok said he would prefer to recruit freshmen, sophomore and juniors because of the length of the project.

“It’s at least a year to design the study and collect the data,” Prybutok said. “To get it all the way through to data analysis, write-up, publication, is as much as three years, typically.”

Prybutok said he will supervise the students’ work, which will include designing the cartoon, analyzing survey results and determining effectiveness.

Graduate students will also provide supervision when Prybutok is unavailable.

Management science graduate student Kwabena Boakye will oversee portions of the research.

Boakye said he believes the results will show the cartoons to communicate a stronger message than the videos.

“The image it carries will have a greater impact than watching and listening to videos on YouTube,” Boakye said. “People will always remember the cartoon.”

Graduate requirements consist primarily of research and Boakye hopes students will take advantage of this learning opportunity, he said.

“I want the undergrads to have an interesting experience and good exposure as to what research is all about,” Boakye said. “The transition into graduate school will be easier for them.”

An informational meeting will be held today at 4 p.m. in the Business Leadership Building, room 314.

The study is open to all undergraduates, but students required to pursue research may benefit the most, Prybutok said.

“For now I’m working with the honor students,” Prybutok said. “I want to see this and how it works and I will possibly have other projects in the future.”

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