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Research Question

  1. Are the online resources developed to help improve mental health for California students being used by their intended audiences?

Analysis of visitors to CalMHSA-funded student mental health websites shows that visitors at educational institutions comprised the largest audience segment and promotional campaigns likely increased traffic.

Key Findings

  • Most users accessed the websites directly, suggesting that awareness campaigns such as emails with direct links to the sites were valuable promotional efforts.
  • One of the higher education websites drew more users from outside California than expected, suggesting a national engagement with the site.
  • Internet service provider data indicate that the majority of users visiting the higher education sites and the K-12 site came from educational institutions.
  • Peaks in website usage suggest that promotional efforts may have successfully increased traffic immediately after release.
  • Analysis of site usage indicates a user appetite for browsing available databases and resources on student mental health issues.

Recommendation

Efforts to sustain and publicize CalMHSA-funded student mental health websites—and cross-promote their content between sites—are worth pursuing in order to encourage students' use of content.

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This research was conducted in RAND Health, a division of the RAND Corporation.

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