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The BCERF program on the Cancer Risks of Environmental Chemicals in the Home and Workplace closed on March 31, 2010. No further updates will be made to this web site. Please go Cornell University’s eCommons web site to access BCERF’s archived research and educational materials (http://ecommons.library.cornell.edu/handle/1813/14300).

Assessment Tools
A Guide for Custom Community Intervention Planning

Following is a list of tools to assist you with your environmental assessment. This list is not comprehensive, but includes useful tools to help with your assessment.

Tools assess either the food environment or the physical activity environment. Many address a specific dimension of the environment, built, economic, social, or policy. (For more information about environment, see Part 3: Background.)

dot Tools to Assess the Food Environment
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Built5 a Day - The California Way Restaurant Checklist HTML
A tool designed for use in the California 5 a Day campaign to determine if restaurants were "fruit and vegetable friendly."
Paula Benedict with California Project LEAN.

BuiltRestaurant Menu Coding Survey PDF
This instrument was developed for a project funded by the Cancer Research program to assess availability of healthy foods at restaurants in South Central Los Angeles. The checklist has been extensively field-tested and tested for reliability.
Dr. Diana Cassady, University of California, Davis

BuiltFast Food Restaurant Survey PDF
This survey was developed for the Girls Health Enrichment Multi-site Studies (GEMS), a National Heart Lung and Blood Institute funded trial, that focused on obesity prevention among 8-10 year old African American girls and their families. Mary Story, PhD and Nancy Sherwood, PhD, University of Minnesota.

BuiltEconomicCalifornia Grocery Store Observational Protocol Survey and Key PDF
This instrument was developed for a project funded by the Cancer Research program to assess the availability of healthy foods. The instrument was adapted from a validated study conducted by West, S., Houseman, R., Orenstein, D. and Mayer, J. Dr. Diana Cassady, University of California, Davis

BuiltEconomicFood Stores Survey PDF
This survey was developed for GEMS. Specifically, this survey was used as part of the trial's formative assessment phase. The investigators needed the information to develop a culturally appropriate intervention in the community for African American girls and their families. They wanted to better understand the neighborhoods and its resources, which impact eating and physical activity. Publication: Ethnicity and Disease. 2003 Winter; 13 (1 Suppl 1: Phase 1 of the Girls Health Enrichment Multi-Site Studies (GEMS). Mary Story, PhD, Nancy Sherwood, PhD, University of Minnesota

BuiltGetting the Lay of the Land PDF
This tool provides guidelines for a small group activity with community stakeholders to identify local issues related to healthy eating and active living. It is a useful tool at the start of a project to get some idea about the major issues that may emerge in this community. When used after a brief introductory description of an environmental approach to obesity prevention, it helps community members apply the concepts of this approach to their local community, both to check understanding and to make it applicable to the local environment.

BuiltVending Machine Check List PDF
This vending check list helps draw attention to the availability of nutritious foods in your school or school district. It is a simple survey of which foods are available in school vending machines. The results could be shared with school administrators and parents. Page 42 (survey) and 43 (directions) in the documents. School Foods Tool Kit. Center for Science in the Public Interest and the California Center for Public Health Advocacy

ScoialSocial Support Surveys for Diet and Exercise Behaviors PDF
These validated scales are among the first measures of social support behaviors specific to dietary and exercise habit change and are correlated with respective self-reported dietary and exercise habits. Publication: Sallis JF, Grossman RM, Pinski RB, Patterson TL, and Nader PR. (1987). The Development of Scales to Measure Social Support for Diet and Exercise Behaviors. Preventive Medicine, 16, 825-836. Click on the following PubMed link for abstract: National Center for Biotechnology Information website. Sallis JF, Grossman RM, Pinski RB, Patterson TL, Nader PR, with Child and Family Health Studies, University of California, San Diego

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BuiltWalkability Index PDF
This checklist can help you decide if your neighborhood is a friendly place to walk. After you've used the checklist, there are hints to improve your neighborhood walkability score. Partnership for a Walkable America, Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center, U.S. Department of Transportation, United States Environmental Protection Agency

BuiltBikability Checklist PDF
This tool was created as a means to get feedback on such things as community planning or a bicycle community event. This basic assessment tool was created with a focus on ease of use for the community. Funded by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), and developed with the help of other entities including the Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center.

BuiltEnvironmental Supports for Physical Activity Questionnaire (Social and Physical Environment Survey) PDF
This questionnaire was used for a Special Interest Project funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The goal of the project was to develop and test questions for a future Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) module. University of South Carolina Prevention Research Center

BuiltEconomicCommunity, Park, Recreation and Fitness Centers Survey PDF
This survey was developed for GEMS. Specifically, this survey was used as part of the trial's formative assessment phase. The investigators needed the information to develop a culturally appropriate intervention in the community for African American girls and families. They wanted to better understand the neighborhoods and its resources, which may impact eating and physical activity. Publication: Ethnicity and Disease. 2003 Winter; 13 (1 Suppl 1: Phase 1 of the Girls Health Enrichment Multi-Site Studies (GEMS). Mary Story, PhD, University of Minnesota, Division of Epidemiology.

BuiltGetting the Lay of the Land PDF
This tool provides guidelines for a small group activity with community stakeholders to identify local issues related to healthy eating and active living. It is a useful tool at the start of a project to get some idea about the major issues that may emerge in this community. When used after a brief introductory description of an environmental approach to obesity prevention, it helps community members apply the concepts of this approach to their local community, both to check understanding and to make it applicable to the local environment.

SocialEnvironmental Supports for Physical Activity Questionnaire (Social and Physical Environment Survey) PDF
This questionnaire was used for a Special Interest Project funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The goal of the project was to develop and test questions for a future Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) module. University of South Carolina Prevention Research Center

SocialBody Mass Index Calculator HTML
This online calculator provides body mass index based on height and weight. Other information about BMI available on the site. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute: Obesity Education Inititative

dot Tools to Asses Both the Food and the Physical Activity Environment
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Food and Physical Activity Surveys HTML
The Center for Advanced Studies in Nutrition and Social Marketing of the Department of Public Health Sciences at the University of California, Davis lists many validated tools for use in assessing food, physical activity and social environments.

School Health Index HTML
The School Health Index is a self-assessment and planning guide developed by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control that helps identify the strengths and weaknesses of your school's policies and programs for promoting health and safety; develop an action plan for improving student health and safety; and involve teachers, parents, students, and the community in improving school policies, programs, and services. U.S. Centers for Disease Control

Picture My Community PDF
This activity uses the Photovoice technique. Photovoicing allows local citizens to take photographs of their environment and use them in group discussion to explore their community's strengths and problems. For more information about the Photovoice technique, see: http://www.photovoice.com/method/

The View From Here PDF
An interview guide to learn how community leaders and key stakeholders view childhood obesity in the community, factors that may contribute to the problem, and the possible resources for addressing the problem.