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Joanne G. Patterson, PhD, MPH, MSW (she/her/hers)

logo; blue and gray text reading practice and science for health equity

Joanne G. Patterson (she/her hers) is an NIH NCI-funded Assistant Professor in the Division of Health Behavior and Health Promotion at The Ohio State University (OSU) College of Public Health (PI: R00CA260718).  She previously trained as part of a T32 in Cancer Prevention and Control at OSU Comprehensive Cancer Center – Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute.

Dr. Patterson is a health equity scholar and behavioral scientist whose research is focused on promoting health and decreasing cancer risk in lesbian, gay bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ); young adult; and rural populations. Her program of research uses multilevel and socioecological approaches in the prevention and reduction of cancer risk factors; specifically, carcinogenic product use and food insecurity. She is especially interested in developing population-level interventions to reduce cancer risk factors and promote cancer-preventive behaviors. Her research interests are informed by the decade she spent training and practicing as a public health social worker in Boston, MA.

Since joining OSU, Dr. Patterson’s program of research has focused on questions that have implications for advancing tobacco prevention and control. Recent studies include a formative evaluation of a LGBTQ culturally targeted tobacco public education program and provider training to increase screening and referral of LGBTQ tobacco users to evidence0based cessation (PIs: Patterson and Ferketich); a quantitative study of young adult LGBTQ women’s perceptions of e-cigarette harms messages (PI: Theodore Wagener); and an online experimental study investigating how e-cigarette advertising features influence risk perception and purchase intentions among LGBTQ and non-LGBTQ young adults. Each of these studies will inform interventions to decrease tobacco use in high-risk LGBTQ groups.

Dr. Patterson collaborates on several NIH-funded studies in tobacco prevention and regulatory science. Projects have assessed predictors of tobacco use in Appalachian and urban adolescents (PIs: Amy Ferketich and Peter Shields), homeless youth (PI: Nemeth), and LGBT adults (PI: Mary Ellen Wewers), and investigated perceptions of JUUL health claims in young adult JUUL users and adult tobacco users (PIs: Ferketich and Patricia Zettler). She is engaged in qualitative evaluation of waterpipe (WP) users’ risk perceptions in response to warning label messages as part of a broader lab study to develop WP warning labels (PIs: Ferketich and Marielle Brinkman), as well as qualitative evaluation of WP users’ sensory and risk perceptions in response to WP tobacco additives (PIs: Brinkman and Wagener).

Dr. Patterson integrates her experience in research and practice in the classroom. Using case-based teaching and flipped classroom methods, Dr. Patterson fosters teaching environments that creatively engage students in real-world public health problems while achieving public health competencies. She is convinced that public health teaching and practice is stronger when informed by transdisciplinary expertise and approaches, and she is thrilled to teach students from a wide range of disciplines (e.g., social work, sociology, psychology, nursing, pre-med, veterinary medicine) in her public health courses. She believes that, “Being an effective teacher requires first and foremost learning how to be an effective teacher and then repeatedly relearning how to be an effective teacher.” – Jessamyn Neuhaus, Geeky Pedagogy  As such, she is interested using academic evaluation to foster continuous course improvement while making scholarly contributions to public health education praxis.

This website serves both to highlight Dr. Patterson’s current research and to share her reflections on academic life and professional development.