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Message Testing with Underrepresented Populations

Award No.: 
N-00014-04-1-0659
Status: 
Complete
Principal Investigator: 
Timothy Sellnow
PI Organization: 
North Dakota State University
Abstract: 
The primary objective of this project was to determine the variance in message needs and receptivity among under-represented populations and mainstream American consumers. Data was collected using focus groups and surveys. Information was collected from several groups: Native American tribes, Hmong, Middle Eastern, and Somali immigrants, and African Americans. Participants viewed a variety of messages and their receptivity to each was measured and discussed. Clear distinctions were drawn for each population studied. Generalizable concerns were summarized in a booklet for distribution to those charged with communicating about foodborne crises to underrepresented populations. Some key challenges that were identified include diverse learning styles, history of mistrust, lack of trust for standard media, and a general lack of access to information. This project provides unprecedented information identifying the variance between the communication preferences of the under-represented populations and the mainstream public.
Analytic Methods Utilized: