Pilot test of an Internet virtual world chat room for rural teen smokers

TitlePilot test of an Internet virtual world chat room for rural teen smokers
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2001
AuthorsWoodruff, SI, Edwards, CC, Conway, TL, Elliott, SP
JournalJournal of Adolescent Health
Date PublishedOct
Publication Languageeng
ISBN Number1054-139X (Print)1054-139X (Linking)
Accession Number11587907
Keywords*Internet, *Rural Population, *User-Computer Interface, Adolescent, Attitude to Health, Female, Humans, Male, Pilot Projects, Smoking Cessation/psychology, Smoking/*psychology, Time Factors

OVERVIEW: This pilot study evaluated the acceptability and efficacy of an Internet-based virtual reality "world" for teen smoking cessation. Rural teens at six school sites interacted in real-time in the virtual world with a trained cessation counselor and other teen smokers over a 2-month period in seven 1-hour chat sessions. The cessation counselor used motivational interviewing, a "client-centered" nonconfrontational approach to behavior change that has shown promise with behaviors resistant to change. Smoking behavior and attitudes were assessed at baseline, after intervention, and at 1-month follow-up. Significant changes were found in quitting, amount smoked, and intentions to quit. Positive trends were seen in past-week abstinence rates, quit attempts, and attitudes toward quitting.

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