Analysis of Girls Inc.’s Redefining Beauty Curriculum in the Prevention of Eating Disorders


  • Kelsey Farris Indiana University School of Medicine; Girls Inc. of Greater Indianapolis; Hoosier Public Health Corps
  • Niki Messmore Indiana University School of Medicine; Hoosier Public Health Corps
  • Jade Stone Girls Inc. of Greater Indianapolis



Background: Eating disorders are commonly diagnosed psychiatric disorders in adolescents. Because of the severity of disease and difficulty of treatment, means of prevention are important. Girls Inc. is a national non-profit organization that delivers evidence-based programming for people identifying as girls. Their four-week summer camp includes curriculum for building relationships, economic and media literacy, body image, and self-esteem. Here, the Girls Inc. curriculum “Redefining Beauty” is evaluated for efficacy of changing attitudes and behaviors correlated with development of eating disorders.

Methods: Pre-and-post curriculum self-report surveys were administered to 11-14-year-olds (n=28) at the Girls Inc. summer camp. Group C1 consisted of 11-12 year-olds and C2 were 13-14 year-olds. All participants present for the camp the day of surveying were included in the study. Likert scales were used to assess body image and self  -esteem. Collins Child Female Scale determined dissonance between current and ideal body image. Data was also collected regarding the use of dieting and exercise to lose weight.

Results: No significant differences were found. In a Likert scale question on body satisfaction, there was no significant difference between pre-and post-curriculum answers (X2(t-1.7056, p=0.1036)). Body dissonance was measured to have no significant difference between pre-and post-curriculum answers (Paired t-test(t=0.8467, p=0.4077)). In a question asking if participants have been on a diet, 41.4% answered yes. This data was compared between two groups, and no significant difference was found (X2(z=0.1357, p=0.7125)) .  

Conclusion: This research can be used to aid Girls Inc. and similar programs in updating or creating eating disorder prevention curriculum. Because research has shown that increasing self-esteem and improving body image leads to decreased risk of developing eating disorders, it is important that curriculum aimed at preventing eating disorders is measured for its success in improving these factors.