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Preterm birth is one of the most persistent of health disparities and accounts for five times more African American versus European American infant death. The preterm birth rate in African American is nearly twice as high compared to European Americans. Recent studies have shown that a major contributor to this disparity is accounted for by the greater environmental heterogeneity seen in African American populations. The purpose of this study is to examine how the measured neighborhood environment influences race-specific preterm birth rates by: 1) assessing the degree of neighborhood heterogeneity that exists between self-identified race; 2) estimate the extent these sources influence preterm birth rates and; 3) compare the measured neighborhood environment (Neighborhood Inventory for Environmental Typology (NIfETy)) with a self-assessment of neighborhood quality (Neighborhood Environmental Survey (NES)). This presentation will show results that the NIfETy and NES are highly correlated and predict the occurrence of preterm birth. Additionally, results will provide support for our primary hypothesis that women who score higher in perceiving their neighborhood environment as safe/positive, were less likely have a preterm birth. Finally, I will summarize my practical research experience as part of my PSYC 494 internship recording field data for the NIfETy in an urban setting.

Publication Date


Current Academic Year


Faculty Advisor/Mentor

Timothy York

Faculty Advisor/Mentor

Sara Wagner

Faculty Advisor/Mentor

Ananda Amstadter


© The Author(s)

Assessment of the Neighborhood Environment and its Association with Gestational Age at Birth