Author ORCID Identifier : Karen Hobden : Wilfreda Thurston : Gail McVey : Charlene Senn

Document Type


Publication Title

Prevention Science

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First Page


Last Page



Intervention fidelity, Randomized controlled trial, Sexual assault prevention




In this paper, we describe and evaluate the strategies used to maximize intervention fidelity in a randomized controlled trial to examine the efficacy of a sexual assault resistance intervention. The EAAA program was based on the best available theory and evidence on how women can successfully resist sexual coercion from male acquaintances. Extensive protocols for hiring, training, and supervising facilitators were established a priori. Detailed intervention manuals were developed that clearly described program goals, learning objectives, core elements, troubleshooting tips, sections that must be delivered verbatim, adaptations that could be made if necessary, and the ideal and minimum dose. Program sessions were audio-recorded, and a subsample of recordings were scored for adherence to the manuals using detailed Intervention Fidelity Checklists (IFC) developed specifically for this research. The Gearing et al. (2011) Comprehensive Intervention Fidelity Guide (CFIG) was employed retrospectively to provide objectivity to our analysis and help identify what we did well and what we could have done better. The SARE (Sexual Assault Resistance Education) Trial received high scores (38 out of 44 (86%) from each of the first two authors on the CFIG, suggesting a high level of intervention fidelity. Although a potential for bias on the part of the two raters was an obvious limitation, as was our neglection to include measures of implementation receipt, which Gearing et al. (2011) recommended, our analysis underscores the utility in employing methods recommended to enhance intervention fidelity when developing and evaluating evidence-based interventions.

Funding Reference Number

FRN 110976

Included in

Psychology Commons