The Storytelling Approach in Research

“Storytelling is a proven behavioral intervention where people in a community tell their health stories to others to improve health outcomes.”


  1. Interview guides were developed based on the thematic analysis developed in focus groups that occurred at the University of Alabama-Birmingham.
  2. Vanderbilt selected individuals to participate in one-on-one on camera interviews, and these interviews were conducted by the UMass Storytelling Team.
  3. The Storytelling team conducted the video-recorded in depth interviews based on the alignment of the themes developed and the content of their story. We coordinated the interviews to be convenient to the individual participants. We staggered the video interviews so that we can adapt our process as necessary. During the interviews, each participant was reminded to describe their best stories.
  4. The videos were subsequently divided into “story units”, or themes (reason for participation, informed consent, etc.
  5. Each story unit will be systematically rated and reviewed by members of the UMass team. The storytellers will also be rated by community members and other outside evaluators in order to pick the best “stories” that will be packaged into the final intervention.

Why should I participate?

What should I know before participating?

Is it safe to participate?

Who should be participating in Research?

For more information about our storytelling team, please visit this link