The Teenovate team recently applied for and received development support funds from the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s Technology and Adolescent Mental Wellness (TAM) program. The funding, sponsored by the Social Media Adolescent Health Research Team, is to be used for the purposes of forming a Youth Advisory Board, to inform adolescent health research. We plan to use this funding to ensure financial compensation, in the form of a $10/hour wage for every 9 hours worked per month, for teens participating in our Youth Advisory Board.

The Teenovate program aims to be a Participatory Action Research (PAR) and Design (PD) program for adolescents, that engages teens as co-researchers and co-designers in the development and evaluation online safety solutions that empower youth. The objective of the Teenovate YAB is to go beyond engaging teens as end users and research participants to have teens steer and shape to the design of our research protocols. Our objective is to ensure that Teenovate prioritizes the most salient and timely issues confronting teens online.

The Teenovate YAB will be formed by nine teenagers between the ages of 13-17, living in the United States. Our YAB members will work to review the Teenovate Program’s planned and upcoming research studies, helping us to improve the teen-centered design of our research. Importantly, we will give YAB members the latitude to initiate new Teenovate projects in addition to advising on the scope and activities of on-going research. To this end, we will structure the Teenovate YAB as a research-apprenticeship program, where we will commit in-person meeting time to also training YAB members how to conduct scholarly research and use industry-standard User Experience (UX) prototyping tools (e.g., Figma) that will bolster their college applications. We will also give the Teenovate YAB the opportunity to nominate officers of their choosing.

Please be sure to visit our website again as we prepare to launch YAB applications in the coming months!