April 4, 2011
The multiphase optimization strategy (MOST) is a new methodological approach for building, optimizing, and evaluating behavioral interventions. Based on the engineering design process, MOST emphasizes efficiency and resource management in the design and re-evaluation of interventions. This article illustrates MOST by describing the ongoing step-by-step application of this approach in the construction and evaluation of a smoking-cessation intervention. A companion article, “New Methods for Tobacco Dependence Treatment Research” by Baker et al., describes the phase-based framework that provides the theoretical model for identifying the best set of intervention components (2011). The current article discusses the advantages of implementing MOST over a traditional program-evaluation approach: MOST can generate results-driven, updatable, cost-sensitive interventions that enhance type II translation (i.e. effectiveness in real world settings). The article concludes by discussing the challenges and benefits associated with MOST and its potential for broader application.
Collins, L. M., Baker, T. B., Mermelstein, R. J., Piper, M. E., Jorenby, D. E., Smith, S. S., . . . Fiore, M. C. (2011). The multiphase optimization strategy for engineering effective tobacco use interventions. Annals of Behavioral Medicine, 41(2), 208-226. The full text of the article is available here.
Baker, T. B., Mermelstein, R., Collins, L. M., Piper, M. E., Jorenby, D. E., Smith, S. S., . . . Fiore, M. C. (2011). New methods for tobacco dependence treatment research. Annals of Behavioral Medicine, 41(2), 192-207. The full text of the companion article is available here.
Photo: Dr. Jessica Cook, Dr. Tanya Schlam, Dr. Megan Piper, and David Fraser of The Center for Tobacco Research and Intervention at the University of Wisconsin (UW-CTRI): the study discussed in the article is being conducted by UW-CTRI.