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Comparison of Online and Face-to-Face Dissemination of a Theory-Based After School Nutrition and Physical Activity Training and Curriculum

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Abstract:

This study was conducted to compare two different online delivery methods to train after school program leaders (ASPLs) to implement a nutrition and physical activity curriculum for children to each other and to a face-to-face (FTF) training model. A three-group design was used in which ASPLs from 12 states were randomized to either standard (n = 34) or an enhanced interaction (n = 31) online training, while a FTF group (n = 24) served as comparison. All ASPLs completed training and implemented curriculum lessons over 16 weeks from March to June 2007. Weekly evaluations and pre and post-intervention questionnaires compared number of lessons implemented, subjective ratings of lesson success, and pre and post leader nutrition and physical activity knowledge. Multivariate linear regression analyses were used for among-group comparisons, paired Ttests for within-group knowledge change. Knowledge scores increased significantly (p < .001) within each group. All ASPLs fulfilled the goal of conducting at least 9 lessons, and they rated 64% of lessons successful. After adjustment, knowledge change and success scores did not differ among groups. Implementation was significantly higher for FTF (+2.23 lessons, p = .013) than for enhanced interaction, but not for standard. Online training for ASPLs, such as the standard condition, are viable means of nutrition and physical activity education and program dissemination.

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/10810730.2010.522225

Affiliations: 1: The Sage Colleges, Troy, New York,John Hancock Center for Physical Activity and Nutrition, Tufts University, Boston, Massachusetts, USA,Gerald J. and Dorothy R. Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy, Tufts University, Boston, Massachusetts, USA 2: John Hancock Center for Physical Activity and Nutrition, Tufts University, Boston, Massachusetts, USA,Gerald J. and Dorothy R. Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy, Tufts University, Boston, Massachusetts, USA 3: Gerald J. and Dorothy R. Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy, Tufts University, Boston, Massachusetts, USA 4: Eliot Pearson Department of Child Development, Computer Science Department, Tufts University, Medford, Massachusetts, USA

Publication date: December 1, 2010

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