Knowledge Translation (KT)

Goal — Knowledge Translation
All school staff, families and students need to develop an understanding of mental health promotion, prevention and intervention based on current best evidence.

Problem: It is estimated that is takes more than 17 years to translate evidence to practice1 and that only about 14% of new knowledge is believed to enter daily practice.2

What? Knowledge translation is a process:

  • Involving a complex set of activities including a combination of face-to-face interaction, reading, reflection, and discussion;
  • Promoting a dynamic, iterative, and collaborative process
  • Between diverse stakeholders: researchers, decision-makers and practitioners
  • Resulting in mutual learning, synthesis of knowledge, problem-solving, planning and application of new learning based on quality research and the specific context leading to practice change.3

How to promote knowledge translation?
Create systematic opportunities for meaningful, focused interaction or exchange between people that share a desire to improve a common practice.4,5

Communities of Practice (CoP) can serve as a mechanism for promoting knowledge translation.6 Read about Communities of Practice in the text tab!

Read — Reflect — Dialogue — Implement Change

1 Balas EA, Boren SA. (2000). Managing clinical knowledge for health care improvement. In: Bemmel J, McCray AT, editors. Yearbook of Medical Informatics 2000: Patient-Centered Systems. Stuttgart, Germany: Schattauer Verlagsgesellschaft mbH; 2000:65-70.
2 Westfall, J.M., Mold, J., & Fagan, L. (2007). Practice-based research – "Blue Highways" on the NIH Roadmap. JAMA, 297(4), 403-406.
4 Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) CIHR. (2004). Knowledge translation strategy 2004–2009: Innovation in action. Ottawa, ON: Canadian Institutes of Health Research. Retrieved from
5 Lowe, M, Rappolt, S, Jaglal, S., & Macdonald, G. (2007). The role of reflection in implementing learning from continuing education to practice. Journal of Continuing Education in Health Care Practice, 27, 143-148.
6 Barwick M., Peters J., Boydell KM. (2009). Getting to Uptake: Do Communities of Practice Support the Implementation of Evidence-Based Practice? Journal of the Canadian Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, 18(1), 16-29.