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Published! Toxic TikTok Trends…

Published! Toxic TikTok Trends…

Congratulations to Ava Korbani '22 on the publication of her AP Research article, Toxic TikTok Trends, in the Journal of Student Research.

The paper was researched and written under the guidance of faculty member Mrs. Jessica (Dick '09) LaBrie as part of the College Board’s AP Capstone™ Program offered at CCHS.

Toxic TikTok Trends

Click here read the article in Vol. 10 No. 2 (2021): AP Research July.

About the Paper

With the rise of social media, body image dissatisfaction has increased among young females and has led to a variety of negative consequences such as eating disorders. The TikTok app is the newest form of social media where users are encouraged to post creative videos and provide commentary. TikTok’s ForYouPage, an algorithm that creates a symbiotic relationship between user interest in trends and a means to satisfy these interests, has promoted the long-standing theme of body image dissatisfaction on social media apps. The more users continue to express interest in toxic body trends, the more the app pushes this same content. My research will dive into the specific trends that appear on a TikTok ForYouPage, with the goal to determine the most toxic criteria prevalent on the TikTok body image atmosphere. For the purpose of my study, I created two separate equations: total measured toxicity (TMT) derived from a content analysis, and a total surveyed toxicity (TST) derived from a focus group survey. I concluded from the two equations that the act of giving or receiving qualitative or quantitative appearance rates is the most toxic criteria prevalent on TikTok’s body image atmosphere. The results of this study give insight to how the app should take action to eliminate toxic body trends and prioritize restricting the most toxic criteria, as determined by my study.

Ava's article was one of the top three most viewed articles in August!

Ava wrote the paper as part of the AP Research course, which is taught by Mrs. Jessica LaBrie '09.

AP Research is the second course offered as part of the AP Capstone™ Program. More details on the program are included below.

Ava Korbani '22 and Mrs. LaBrie '09 posing in the library

"From the first day of the class, she came in talking about this idea she had for her project, that eventually led to this paper," notes Mrs. LaBrie. "She worked so hard throughout the year and excelled at being a Researcher - I know more research will be in her future. Ava earned a score of 5 in AP Research and is well on her way to achieving her AP Capstone Diploma. I greatly enjoyed watching Ava grow throughout the year as this project developed. After it was submitted to College Board, it was great to work with her to get this paper published."

Journal of Student Research logo

About the Journal

Journal of Student Research (JSR) is an Academic, Multidisciplinary, and Faculty-reviewed Journal (Houston, Texas) devoted to the rapid dissemination of current research published by high school, undergraduate, and graduate students.


Ava Korbani '22 poses in her swim & dive team uniform

About Ava Korbani '22

  • Hometown: Methuen
  • Middle School: Comprehensive Grammar School


  • Raider Swim & Dive Team (Diver)
  • Raider Gymnastics Team
  • Peer Leaders Club
  • Student Ambassadors
  • National Honor Society (Co-Treasurer)
  • Student Alumni Association (SAA)


Through the Raider Swim Team, Ava participated in the Sunday Swim Program at the Reading YMCA. This program provides a supportive environment for children with disabilities to engage in a pool setting. Ava was paired with a buddy. "Every Sunday morning, he and I would interact and play games in the pool. Seeing him, so happy to see me, really made me appreciate and love the Sunday Swim Program."

The Central Catholic Faculty

"Over the last year, I’ve really gotten to know Mrs. LaBrie. Starting with the hybrid model last year, Mrs. LaBrie provided me with a supportive, engaging, and welcoming environment that mimicked a traditional classroom dynamic."

What the Future Holds

"In the future, I hope to continue conducting various forms of research at whatever college I attend. For possible majors, I am interested in economics as a pre-law track.

A Raider Family

"My dad, Steve Korbani, graduated from CCHS in 1989. My mom, Sonia (Cherubin) Korbani, graduated from Presentation of Mary Academy in 1991. My sister, Sophia Korbani, is currently a sophomore at CCHS.


Jessica LaBrie

About Mrs. Jessica (Dick '09) LaBrie, English Teacher

A Central Catholic alum, Mrs. LaBrie is in her fifth year of teaching in the English Department at CCHS after graduating from the University of Massachusetts Boston with an MA in English Composition

"I choose to work at Central Catholic because of the community," states Mrs. LaBrie. "It is rare to find such a supportive workplace where you get to do what you love every day and make a difference in students' lives."

"Central Catholic is special because it really is a family. People care and support one another. They are there for one another. They celebrate together and go through difficult times together."

In addition to teaching, she also works with students in the Library & Media Center.

Mrs. LaBrie was recognized last year for embracing technology and expanding her teaching methods to include new tools that empowered her students to connect, learn, and stay organized – whether at home or in the physical classroom – keeping them engaged in new and innovative ways.

Click here to read, Helping Students Stay Connected on a Digital Campus.

Outside of the classroom, Mrs. LaBrie loves to read and play golf. She has two English Bulldogs-- Moose and Muggle. She is married to CCHS alum Mr. Michael LaBrie '06.


AP Capstone™ Program

Central Catholic High School boasts an extensive, strong and consistently successful Advanced Placement (AP) Program.

As a result, we have been chosen by the College Board as one of the select schools in Massachusetts and New Hampshire to offer the AP Capstone™ Diploma.

About the AP Capstone™ Program

AP Capstone™ is a diploma program from the College Board. It’s based on two yearlong AP courses: AP Seminar and AP Research.

Rather than teaching subject-specific content, these courses develop students’ skills in research, analysis, evidence-based arguments, collaboration, writing, and presenting. Students who complete the two-year program can earn one of two different AP Capstone awards, which are valued by colleges across the United States and around the world.

Program Details

Students typically take AP Seminar in grade 10 or 11, followed by AP Research. Each course is yearlong, and AP Seminar is a prerequisite for AP Research.

In both courses, students investigate a variety of topics in multiple disciplines. Students may choose to explore topics related to other AP courses they’re taking.

Both courses guide students through completing a research project, writing an academic paper, and making a presentation on their project.

Over the course of the two-year program, students are required to:

  • Analyze topics through multiple lenses to construct meaning or gain understanding.
  • Plan and conduct a study or investigation.
  • Propose solutions to real-world problems.
  • Plan and produce communication in various forms.
  • Collaborate to solve a problem.
  • Integrate, synthesize, and make cross-curricular connections.


AP scores for both courses are based on teacher assessment of student presentation components and College Board scoring of student-written components plus an end-of-course exam (for AP Seminar only).


Students who earn scores of 3 or higher in AP Seminar and AP Research and on four additional AP Exams of their choosing receive the AP Capstone Diploma™. Students who earn scores of 3 or higher in AP Seminar and AP Research but not on four additional AP Exams receive the AP Seminar and Research Certificate™.

Congratulations, Ava, on this impressive accomplishment!

Central Catholic High School
A College Preparatory High School of Excellence in the Marist Tradition

Founded by the Marist Brothers in the heart of Lawrence, Massachusetts in 1935, Central Catholic High School enrolls 1,200 students from over 60 cities and towns and several countries. Students come from diverse backgrounds to form a caring community of faith, learning, and service. They advance to college in overwhelming numbers (nearly 100%) and move on to successful careers and positions of leadership in government, business, industry, academia, and professions.

Central Catholic High School is fully accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges.

For more information, please visit, call 978-682-0260, or email

Mission: Central Catholic High School makes Jesus known and loved.
We educate the whole person for college and for life, with particular care for the least favored and those in need.