Brian Pendleton, Ph.D.

Brian Pendleton, Ph.D.

Title: Professor Emeritus
Dept/Program: Sociology


Brian Pendleton is Professor of Sociology at The University of Akron and is Research Professor of Sociology in Family Medicine at Northeastern Ohio Universities College of Medicine.  He received his Ph.D from Iowa State University in 1977 and then completed postdoctoral research in demography at the same institution. His specialty areas are medical sociology, epidemiology, literacy, quantitative methodology, demography, and the sociology of children.  Brian has been PI or co-PI for almost 21 million dollars in grant and contract monies from federal, state and local sources.  He was one of the original creators of the Decker Family Development Center in Barberton, OH and served 15 years there as co-manager and director of research and evaluation.  His research has been published in Family Medicine, American Board of Family Medicine, Health Care for the Poor and Underserved, Religion and Health, Family Violence, Social Science and Medicine, Marriage and the Family, Social Biology, Statistical Computation and Simulation, among others.

Brian is one of the few University of Akron faculty to have ever received both the university-wide Outstanding Teacher Award (1993) and the Outstanding Researcher Award (2001). He is a co-recipient of the Patient Care Award from the Society of Teachers of Family Medicine and American Academy of Family Physicians.   He has been recognized by the College of Arts and Sciences with the inaugural Community Service award and the College Research Award.  His community service work with the Decker Center, United States Olympic Committee and other organizations was recognized a few years ago with the Award of Achievement in Community Service by Northern Ohio LIVE Magazine.


1.  On-going project titled “For Your Health

 “ …places interactive kiosks in the waiting rooms of clinics for the medically underserved to provide patient education and to study the effect of the kiosk on the delivery of physician counseling in four areas – alcohol intake, exercise, smoking cessation and weight control”.  Six clinics for the medically underserved were in the first wave and we collected data on about 5,300 users.  Funding attempts are being made to expand the kiosk placement into more traditional family practice centers and to add coverage for project operational costs.  A picture of one of the kiosks is shown.


 Pendleton, B.F., Schrop, S.L., Ritter, C., Kinion, E.S., McCord, G., Cray, J.J., Costa, A.J. 2010. Underserved patients’ choice of kiosk-based preventive health information.  Family Medicine 42(7):488-495.


The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality National PBRN Research Conference in Bethesda:

Pendleton, BF & Schrop, SL. 2010. Underserved patients’ preventive health state of change: A report from NEON.

The project has received over $300,000 in external funding from multiple sources and is best known nationally for receiving the 2006 Patient Care Award for Excellence in Patient Education Innovation presented by the Society for Teachers of Family Medicine and American Association of Family Practice for applying technology to enhance underserved populations’ engagement into preventive health behaviors.

2.  The success of an earlier literacy CD for practitioners led to a collaboration between UA Sociology, NEOUCOM Family Medicine, and Cleveland Clinic’s Ambulatory Research Network to extend these efforts and engage in technology to educate healthcare providers, patients and caregivers about caring for adults with intellectual and other developmental disabilities.  This project is coordinated by the Clinic and was funded by the Ohio Developmental Disabilities Council and is called “Hard-Wired for Health”.  We currently are developing a three part enduring materials training CD for practitioners, patients with IDD, and support professionals.

 3.  Other research projects focus on literacy levels among medical students and patient education materials with data currently being analyzing and materials written; technology enhanced weight loss programs for underserved populations (focus groups being run and data collected); evaluating weight loss and chronic disease management programs among underserved populations at Ohio clinics for the underserved (data being analyzed and reports prepared); and patient-physician communication patterns (data being collected).  


Ph.D. in Sociology (1977) from Iowa State University


Introduction to Sociology

Research Design & Methods