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Awarded Research Grant to Prevent Unintentional Injuries

Translating Teen Driver and Parent Interventions into Diverse Practice Settings

Award Type: CDC-Public Health Research Awards
FOA Number: CD-07-005
Project Period: 9/30/2007 – 9/29/2010
Application/Grant Number: CE001341
Principal Investigator: C. Raymond Bingham, Ph.D.
University of Michigan
2901 Baxter Road
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-2150
Phone: 734-763-2466
Fax: 734-936-1076

CDC-Public Health Research Awards

The CDC Office of Public Health Research (OPHR) facilitates CDC research prioritization, planning, and evaluation across both intramural and extramural programs, and ensures the CDC research portfolio is designed for maximum impact on public health and is achieving the desired ends. The OPHR offers several awards in collaboration with the various CDC Centers, including the National Center for Injury Prevention and Control (NCIPC). The following awards were made through the NCIPC.


The overall goal of this study is to improve teen driver safety by increasing parental involvement in helping their teens' learn to drive. A qualitative/quantitative method will be used to examine three issues: achieving more complete implementation of GDL programs by increasing parental involvement with and supervision of their teens as they learn to drive; introducing the Checkpoints program into existing GDL programs as a means of improving parental supervision of their teens as they learn to drive; and, increasing parental involvement in their teens' driver training by identifying disparities in access to licensure through GDL programs, and investigating solutions to increase equal access. Research has consistently shown that GDL is effective in reducing crashes involving teen drivers, including fatal and non-fatal injury crashes. However, the effectiveness of GDL could be improved by better adherence to its requirements. Research has also shown the promise of Checkpoints in enhancing parental limits set on teens' early driving, and on reducing their risky driving. Developing an understanding of how these two evidence-based, complementary approaches could be more effectively and widely implemented should accelerate their adoption, and contribute to a substantial reduction in teen crashes. Disparities in access to driver licensure through GDL results in teens postponing licensure until they are 18 years of age. However, there is significant evidence that unlicensed teens are driving in spite of not being licensed. As a result, they are placing themselves and others at risk, and driving without the safety benefit of GDL. This study will examine these issues using a combination of qualitative methods to understand barriers to and facilitators of GDL licensure and the introduction of Checkpoints into GDL, and to identify disparities in access to GDL and ways to enhance equal access. The results of the qualitative data collection will be used, with the assistance of an expert panel, to develop a survey that will be administered to a nationally representative sample of parents with teens aged 15-17 years. The results of the survey will be presented to the expert panel, and the panel will assist the research team in developing guidelines and recommendations that address the research issues related to GDL, Checkpoints, and disparities in access to GDL. These recommendations will be disseminated to state and federal driver safety departments and offices, and through presentations and peer reviewed publication.