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Research

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MAPS

Sponsored by the National Cancer Institute, the University of Utah's Moving Across Places research team surveys residents' perceptions and activities before and after the North Temple construction project. How do these changes alter your neighborhood perceptions, activities, and travel patterns—activities related to cancer prevention? 

iStar

iSTAR is an intensive community based participatory research/outreach autism program involving students, families, school districts, community partners and businesses. We have documented student outcomes that include:

  • Personal Competencies
  • Social Skill Development
  • Vocational Readiness

The program is innovative with a focus on strength and ability, rather than disability. The long range goal of the program is the development of 3D technology skills in students with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) for future employment.

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Energy Balance

The Energy Balance research team draws on insights from demography, economics, psychology, and sociology to enhance our understanding of how neighborhood and familial environments contribute to Americans' growing obesity risk. Utilizing unique data on thousands of residents drawn from the Utah Population Database, the researchers have found that an adult's obesity risk is lower in neighborhoods that have pedestrian-friendly street networks, more mixed land use, older housing stock, and at least one healthy grocery store option. This group's published research, supported by funding from the National Institutes of Health, provides evidence-based insights regarding how city officials might approach neighborhood building and redevelopment standards if they want to maximize the public health benefits of neighborhood design.

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ThroughPlay (NEW)

ThroughPlay is a multimedia parent-education program on the importance of play and flow experience (i.e., states of deep absorption) for child and adult development. The centerpiece of the program is a multimedia presentation that weaves together developmental science and the creative arts of photography, film, dance, design, and music. The program is currently being implemented and assessed in two funded studies, one with parents who have children in Montessori early childhood programs, and the other with parents in military families associated with Hill Air Force Base. The latter study emphasizes the importance of nature and outdoor play for family health, and also includes organized nature outings in northern Utah.

Last Updated: 12/27/16