How to Organize the Field Practicum
Organization of the practicum should begin prior to the workshop.
The practicum should take place in two communities. (See below.)
Leaders in each of these communities should be contacted to explain
the purpose of the study and to gain their approval. The behaviors
for analysis can be chosen by workshop organizers prior to the workshop
or during the workshop with the input of the participants.
If behaviors for analysis are chosen during the workshop, workshop
participants should be told that they will be choosing one behavior
to explore during the practicum. This behavior will be explored
using the two ways to do Barrier Analysis: through focus groups
and through individual interviews. Then ask participants to use
local Knowledge, Practice and Coverage (KPC) or regional Demographic
and Health Survey (DHS) data to brainstorm a list of behaviors that
they would like to explore during barrier analysis. Try to pick
one behavior that is fairly uncommon (e.g., <20% practicing the
behavior) and a second that is more common (e.g., 40-60% practicing
the behavior). From the list generated by the participants, choose
a behavior that is appropriate. Decide who the target group for
this behavior will be—whose behavior should be changed.
Local health workers (e.g., Community Health Workers [CHWs]) in
two project communities should be contacted and asked to recruit
people in the target group (e.g., mothers of children under two)
to participate in the Barrier Analysis practicum. Interviewees should
be told that their participation is voluntary but greatly encouraged.
These potential interviewees should also be told that they will
be interviewed about a health care topic and that a snack will be
provided. It is not necessary or desirable to tell them the behavior
that will be discussed prior to the practicum. The health worker
should try to get commitments from people who plan to attend and
keep a list of their names. Those who give a commitment to attend
should be told to meet at a designated place where half the participants
can be individually interviewed and half can participate in focus
groups (preferably indoors such as in a school building).
In the first community, where focus groups will be used, the health
worker will need to recruit a total of 12 people who are doing the
behavior that you are studying (“Doers”) and 12 people
who are not (“Non-Doers”). In the second community,
where individual interviews will be done, the health worker should
recruit at least 60 people for the individual interviews who are
in the target group (e.g., mothers of children under 24 months).
For the behavior, “use of Oral Rehydration Solution (ORS)"
with mothers of children under 24 months of age as the target group,
the breakdown would look like this:
- Community A: Recruit 12
mothers of children under 24 months of age who used ORS the last
time their child had diarrhea, and 12 mothers of children under
24 months who did not use ORS the last time their child had diarrhea.
The person doing the recruiting will need to use screening questions
in order to do this. For example, “Has your child ever had
diarrhea? [If so,] what did you do for the child when he/she had
diarrhea? Did you use ORS? Have you ever used ORS?” If you
cannot find 12 people, you could use different selection criteria,
such as those who have ever tried ORS and those who have never
tried it. These mothers will participate in the two focus groups.
- Community B: Use the same
process as in Community A, but recruit at least 30 mothers of
children under 24 months who used ORS the last time their child
had diarrhea, and at least 30 mothers of children under 24 months
who did not use ORS the last time their child had diarrhea. These
mothers will be interviewed individually.
It may be necessary to go out and recruit additional participants
on the morning of the field practicum in order to assure that adequate
numbers of participants are available for each method (8-14 people
for each focus group and 60 people or more for each set of individual