OBJECTIVE - To develop and implement Project LEAD (leadership, education, and advocacy development), a science course for breast cancer activists.
POPULATION - Students were breast cancer activists and other consumers, mainly affiliated with advocacy organizations in the United States of America.
SETTING - Project LEAD is offered by the National Breast Cancer Coalition; the course takes place over 5 days and is offered 4 times a year, in various cities in the United States of America.
RESULTS - The Project LEAD curriculum has developed over 5 years to include lectures, problem-based study groups, case studies, interactive critical appraisal sessions, a seminar by an 'expert' scientist, role play, and homework components. A core faculty has been valuable for evaluating and revising the course and has proved necessary to provide consistent high quality teaching. Course evaluations indicated that students gained critical appraisal skills, enhanced their knowledge and developed confidence in selected areas of basic science and epidemiology.
CONCLUSIONS - Project LEAD comprises a unique curriculum for training breast cancer activists in science and critical appraisal. Course evaluations indicate that students gain confidence and skills from the course.