Diabetes Education in Tribal Schools

2008 DETS Implementation Test Evaluation Research Summary

A national evaluation study examined the success of the 2008 implementation of the Diabetes Education in Tribal Schools (DETS) K-12 curriculum relative to three goals:

1.   Increase the understanding of health, diabetes, and maintaining life in balance among American Indian/Alaska Native students (Teach about diabetes);

2.   Increase American Indian/Alaska Native students’ understanding and application of scientific and community knowledge (Value and use scientific and traditional knowledge);

3.   Increase interest in science and health professions among American Indian/Alaska Native youth (Encourage science and health careers).

The data came from the implementation of the DETS curriculum by eight Tribal Colleges and Universities (TCUs) and seven “Sister Sites,” Tribal Nation participants beyond the immediate regions of the eight TCUs, during the fall 2007 and winter 2008 school semesters across 14 states: Arkansas, California, Florida, Kansas, Montana, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oregon, Michigan, Minnesota, New York, South Dakota, Washington, and Wyoming. Data were collected at three grade bands: elementary (25 teachers, 386 students), middle (23 teachers, 893 students), and high school (15 teachers, 240 students).

Student Data

Goals

Elementary

Middle

High School

1

Pre-post statistically significant gains

(t = 8.83; p<0.001)

Pre-post statistically significant gains

 (t = 7.68; p<0.001)

Pre-post statistically significant gains

(t = 5.24; p<0.001)

2

No data available

 

 

Pre-post statistically significant gains

(t = 15.35; p<0.001)

Pre-post statistically significant gains

(t = 11.07; p<0.001)

3

Of the 21 students who changed career goals from pre- to post-assessment, 64% changed to science

Of the 26 students who changed career goals from pre- to post-assessment, 33% changed to science

Of the 18 students who changed career goals from pre- to post-assessment, 33% changed to science

Teachers found that the curriculum was easy to use, was more engaging than similar curricula, and had strong Native American content.

Teacher Data

Teachers’ Rating

Elementary

Middle

High School

Easy to use/Very easy to use

95%

96%

89%

More engaging than similar curricula

95%

95%

77%

Strong/Very strong Native American content

100%

 

100%

82%

 

Overall, the data show that the DETS curriculum had an effective impact relative to its three goals. Strong achievement gains were found across all three grade bands. Eagle Book supplements for the elementary-level units were well received by students, and teachers rated them highly relevant to curriculum content. In a pre-post career-choice analysis, there was some movement toward careers in science and the health professions. Finally, the DETS curriculum is easy to use, is engaging, and has strong Native American content.

Diabetes Education in Tribal Schools
DHHS NIH NIDDK