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An Analysis of the Ecological Theory of Research
Participation Applied to a Sample of Young
Adult Males

By: Lisa M. Soler, RN and Adriana Ramirez | Mentor: Dr. Michael J. Rovito

Ecological Theory of Research

Marcellus's (2004) Ecological Theory of Research Participation (ETRP) describes a multi-faceted principle behind individual participation in a study. Four levels exist in this model: participant, researcher, study, and environment (see Figure 1 taken from Marcellus). Marcellus (2004) notes a transactional effect among the levels, suggesting that all levels in the model affect one another. This, in turn, indicates the need to account for all levels of the model, thus resulting in a participantcentered approach to studies. Marcellus further proposes that understanding and applying this model allows researchers to identify and account for situationspecific barriers for retaining participants. This aids the investigator in developing strategies to address any difficulties that may be encountered within the different layers of the model, thus minimizing attrition.

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