Johns Hopkins University Center for Adolescent Health


Compared to the nation, Baltimore city has a higher percentage of children living below the poverty line (32 percent vs. 23 percent), as well as higher rates of teenage pregnancy (64 per 1,000 vs. 39 per 1,000), teenage births (51 per 1,000 vs. 31 per 1,000), and juvenile arrests (79 per 1,000 vs. 49 per 1,000).  Baltimore’s extensive adolescent health problems have encouraged many groups to retarget their efforts with adolescents and work to expand the LifeSkills Training—a behavioral prevention program in Baltimore city middle schools that focuses on sexual and reproductive health modules so the city can better address the high rates of pregnancy and STDs by providing training in life skills for adolescents. The Johns Hopkins Center for Adolescent Health (CAH) Prevention Research Center will examine an enhanced LifeSkills Training program in grades 6-8 and evaluate its impact on adolescent health and school outcomes.

Through a school-based clinical trial and citywide monitoring system, this research project will:

  • Expand an evidence-based LifeSkills Training program in grades 6-8
  • Adapt existing intervention modules focusing on the reduction of sexual risk behaviors to supplement LifeSkills Training for grades 7 and 8
  • Evaluate the impact of the training and the enhanced training program on adolescent health and school outcomes
    Identify school and community factors that positively affect the outcomes

The LifeSkills Training research project will aim to reduce substance abuse, violence and risky sexual behavior, as well as improve school attendance and academic performance among adolescents. The study information will be used to improve efforts to increase positive adolescent health, health behaviors and well-being.

Project Identifier LifeSkills Training (LST)

Funding Source PRC Program

Project Status Active

Host Institution Johns Hopkins University

Health Topics Physical activity | Obesity & overweight | Nutrition | Healthy youth

Research setting: School or school district

Race or ethnicity No specific focus

Gender Male and females

Age group Adolescents (12-17 years) | Young Adults (18-24 years)

Contact Information Center
Johns Hopkins Center for Adolescent Health
615 N. Wolfe Street
Room E4608
Baltimore, MD 21205

Principal Investigator/Director
Philip (Phil) J. Leaf, PhD

Tamara Mendelson

Deputy Director
Beth Marshall
Phone: (443) 287-3008