UMass Chan Medical School Faculty Publications


Developing Research and Community Literacies to Recruit Latino Researchers and Practitioners to Address Health Disparities

UMMS Affiliation

Department of Medicine, Division of Preventive and Behavioral Medicine; Department of Quantitative Health Sciences; UMass Worcester Prevention Research Center

Publication Date


Document Type



Community-Based Learning | Community-Based Research | Community Health and Preventive Medicine | Health Services Administration | Health Services Research


Engaging community residents and undergraduate Latino students in developing research and community literacies can expose both groups to resources needed to address health disparities. The bidirectional learning process described in this article developed these literacies through an ethnographic mapping fieldwork activity that used a learning-by-doing method in combination with reflection on the research experience. The active efforts of research team members to promote reflection on the research activities were integral for developing research and community literacies. Our findings suggest that, through participating in this field research activity, undergraduate students and community residents developed a better understanding of resources for addressing health disparities. Our research approach assisted community residents and undergraduate students by demystifying research, translating scientific and community knowledge, providing exposure to multiple literacies, and generating increased awareness of research as a tool for change among community residents and their organizations. The commitment of the community and university leadership to this pedagogical method can bring out the full potential of mentoring, both to contribute to the development of the next generation of Latino researchers and to assist community members in their efforts to address health disparities.


Bidirectional learning, CBPR, Community–university partnerships, Learning-by-doing, Mentoring

DOI of Published Version



J Racial Ethn Health Disparities. 2016 Mar;3(1):138-44. doi: 10.1007/s40615-015-0123-x. Epub 2015 May 8. Link to article on publisher's site

Related Resources

Link to Article in PubMed

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Journal of racial and ethnic health disparities

PubMed ID