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Text Message-Based Intervention Targeting Alcohol Consumption Among University Students: Findings From a Formative Development Study

Overview of attention for article published in JMIR mHealth and uHealth, October 2016
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About this Attention Score

  • Above-average Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age (64th percentile)

Mentioned by

5 tweeters
2 Facebook pages


7 Dimensions

Readers on

34 Mendeley
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Text Message-Based Intervention Targeting Alcohol Consumption Among University Students: Findings From a Formative Development Study
Published in
JMIR mHealth and uHealth, October 2016
DOI 10.2196/mhealth.5863
Pubmed ID

Kristin Thomas


Drinking of alcohol among university students is a global phenomenon; heavy episodic drinking is accepted despite several potential negative consequences. There is emerging evidence that short message service (SMS) text messaging interventions are effective to promote behavior change among students. However, it is still unclear how effectiveness can be optimized through intervention design or how user interest and adherence can be maximized. The objective of this study was to develop an SMS text message-based intervention targeting alcohol drinking among university students using formative research. A formative research design was used including an iterative revision process based on input from end users and experts. Data were collected via seven focus groups with students and a panel evaluation involving students (n=15) and experts (n=5). Student participants were recruited from five universities in Sweden. A semistructured interview guide was used in the focus groups and included questions on alcohol culture, message content, and intervention format. The panel evaluation asked participants to rate to what degree preliminary messages were understandable, usable, and had a good tone on a scale from 1 (very low degree) to 4 (very high degree). Participants could also write their own comments for each message. Qualitative data were analyzed using qualitative descriptive analysis. Quantitative data were analyzed using descriptive statistics. The SMS text messages and the intervention format were revised continuously in parallel with data collection. A behavior change technique (BCT) analysis was conducted on the final version of the program. Overall, students were positive toward the SMS text message intervention. Messages that were neutral, motivated, clear, and tangible engaged students. Students expressed that they preferred short, concise messages and confirmed that a 6-week intervention was an appropriate duration. However, there was limited consensus regarding SMS text message frequency, personalization of messages, and timing. Overall, messages scored high on understanding (mean 3.86, SD 0.43), usability (mean 3.70, SD 0.61), and tone (mean 3.78, SD 0.53). Participants added comments to 67 of 70 messages, including suggestions for change in wording, order of messages, and feedback on why a message was unclear or needed major revision. Comments also included positive feedback that confirmed the value of the messages. Twenty-three BCTs aimed at addressing self-regulatory skills, for example, were identified in the final program. The formative research design was valuable and resulted in significant changes to the intervention. All the original SMS text messages were changed and new messages were added. Overall, the findings showed that students were positive toward receiving support through SMS text message and that neutral, motivated, clear, and tangible messages promoted engagement. However, limited consensus was found on the timing, frequency, and tailoring of messages.

Twitter Demographics

The data shown below were collected from the profiles of 5 tweeters who shared this research output. Click here to find out more about how the information was compiled.

Mendeley readers

The data shown below were compiled from readership statistics for 34 Mendeley readers of this research output. Click here to see the associated Mendeley record.

Geographical breakdown

Country Count As %
Unknown 34 100%

Demographic breakdown

Readers by professional status Count As %
Student > Master 11 32%
Researcher 6 18%
Student > Ph. D. Student 5 15%
Unspecified 2 6%
Student > Bachelor 2 6%
Other 8 24%
Readers by discipline Count As %
Psychology 11 32%
Medicine and Dentistry 7 21%
Social Sciences 5 15%
Unspecified 3 9%
Nursing and Health Professions 3 9%
Other 5 15%

Attention Score in Context

This research output has an Altmetric Attention Score of 4. This is our high-level measure of the quality and quantity of online attention that it has received. This Attention Score, as well as the ranking and number of research outputs shown below, was calculated when the research output was last mentioned on 21 October 2016.
All research outputs
of 11,625,761 outputs
Outputs from JMIR mHealth and uHealth
of 655 outputs
Outputs of similar age
of 258,541 outputs
Outputs of similar age from JMIR mHealth and uHealth
of 25 outputs
Altmetric has tracked 11,625,761 research outputs across all sources so far. This one has received more attention than most of these and is in the 71st percentile.
So far Altmetric has tracked 655 research outputs from this source. They typically receive a lot more attention than average, with a mean Attention Score of 17.6. This one is in the 21st percentile – i.e., 21% of its peers scored the same or lower than it.
Older research outputs will score higher simply because they've had more time to accumulate mentions. To account for age we can compare this Altmetric Attention Score to the 258,541 tracked outputs that were published within six weeks on either side of this one in any source. This one has gotten more attention than average, scoring higher than 64% of its contemporaries.
We're also able to compare this research output to 25 others from the same source and published within six weeks on either side of this one. This one is in the 4th percentile – i.e., 4% of its contemporaries scored the same or lower than it.