Current Research
Extension and Outreach

View our current research below. You may also be interested in our past and overall research.

Diane Bales
Associate Professor and Extension Human Development Specialist

I am currently leading or co-leading two applied research projects. The Healthy Child Care Georgia project, with Foods and Nutrition Assistant Professor Caree Cotwright, evaluates the effectiveness of a policy, systems, and environment approach, combined with direct nutrition education, to change the nutrition and physical activity environments and practices of early childhood programs in Clarke County, Georgia. We are currently working with Head Start, PreK, and Preschool Special Education teachers in the Clarke County School district to make policy changes related to nutrition and physical activity, and to incorporate a 6-week developmentally appropriate curriculum on nutrition and physical activity into their classroom curriculum for young children. This project is funded with UGA SNAP-Ed funding.

A second applied research project, conducted with undergraduate and graduate student assistants, is evaluating the effectiveness of Better Brains for Babies training in preparing Early Head Start home visitors and family education literacy specialists to teach brain development to families. This project is taking place in collaboration with the Clarke County Office of Early Learning. 

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Alison Berg
Assistant Professor and Extension Nutrition and Health Specialist

Effectiveness of the Extension model to enhance knowledge and facilitate healthy behavior change across the lifespan.

Dissertation project: Psychological Constructs, Measures of Adiposity and Weight Loss Following Intervention in Older Women

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Ted Futris
Associate Professor and Extension Family Life Specialist

I am the director of the Couple and Relationship Enrichment (CARE) Laboratory.  Also, I direct the Healthy Relationship and Marriage Education (HMRE) project funded by an $8.2 million grant from the Administration for Children and Families. This five-year, multi-disciplinary, campus-community partnership project involves the implementation and evaluation of research-based services designed to improve healthy marriage and relationship skills and promote economic stability for nearly 1,500 families in a 13-county, mostly rural, region in northeast Georgia. I am also in the process of evaluating the impact of a new program, ELEVATE, on foster parent couples. To learn more about my active research projects, visit

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Judy Harrison
Professor and Extension Foods Specialist


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