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Promising Programs for Substance Abuse Prevention: Replication and Evaluation Initiative

Award Information

Award #
Congressional District
Funding First Awarded
Total funding (to date)

Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2003, $1,990,442)

Promising Programs for Substance Abuse Prevention: Replication and Evaluation Initiative, a multi-year initiative will replicate and evaluate the effectiveness of two school-based substance abuse prevention programs: Project ALERT and Project SUCCESS. This research initiative seeks to determine whether positive program outcomes can be replicated in different communities and sustained over time. The project will oversee program implementation in those sites, and work with program developers to assess and promote program fidelity at each site. An outcome evaluation of the programs effectiveness in preventing, reducing, and/or eliminating substance abuse by youth will be conducted. Findings will enhance knowledge about effective strategies for prevention of substance abuse by youth and help communities decide how to spend the limited resources that are available for prevention activities.


The purpose of this study is to conduct longitudinal evaluations of two substance abuse prevention programs, Projects ALERT (PA) and SUCCESS (PS), which target universal and indicated student populations, respectively. PA, which constitutes the nation's lead evidence-based substance use prevention curriculum, has demonstrated effects on tobacco and marijuana (but not alcohol). PS represents one of a very few evidence-based programs available for high-risk youth in alternative school settings, and has demonstrated short-term effects on an index of multiple drug use. Neither project has been replicated and evaluated by researchers working independently of its developer. Further, PS has not been subjected to an evaluation beyond an immediate post-test. With project funds, the grantee has recruited 34 middle schools and 14 alternative high schools for PA and PS, respectively, and are implementing both prevention curricula to 17 and 7 schools, respectively, that have been randomly assigned to receive the interventions. The primary outcome to be assessed is 30-day substance use. Data are being collected by means of three surveys, namely a pretest and two post-tests spaced one year apart. The purpose of these evaluations is to assess the programs' value in reducing substance use and thereby juvenile delinquency.CA/NCF

Date Created: September 29, 2003