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ERIC Number: EJ1079497
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008
Pages: N/A
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: EISSN-1559-5676
Exploring the Need for Web-Based Training among School Nutrition Directors
Zoellner, Jamie; Carr, Deborah
Journal of Child Nutrition & Management, v32 n1 Spr 2008
Objectives: Web-based training (WBT) has the potential to meet the diverse learning needs of school nutrition directors (SNDs). The overall objective of this needs assessment targeting SNDs was to explore their needs and interests in utilizing WBT. Methods: Researchers developed and administered two instruments: 1) a qualitative structured-interview questionnaire to assess SNDs' use of computers, experiences in Web-based education, and perceived acceptance to WBT, and 2) a quantitative survey to assess perceived knowledge, skill, training, and interests in utilizing WBT within 14 established functional areas. The sampling plan accounted for SNDs who had attended a 5-day Orientation to Child Nutrition Management Seminar (attendees) and those who had not attended (non-attendees). Results: Participants included 42 SNDs (21 attendees and 21 non-attendees) with an average of 3.1 (SD+4.6) years of director experience. There were no discernable response differences between attendees and non-attendees. The majority of SNDs have the technology infrastructure needed to support WBT at work and at home. Thirty-eight (90%) reported interest in utilizing WBT to acquire knowledge, and 40 (95%) reported interest in WBT for practice activities to further improve skills. Benefits of WBT included convenience, opportunities to study unfamiliar areas in more detail and practice skills, ability to gain knowledge, and accessibility of information. Barriers included lack of instructor/student interaction or feedback to questions, on-site interruptions or time, technology problems, and the motivation or discipline needed to complete assignments. Functional areas with the highest ranking for WBT format included "Financial Management and Record Keeping and Nutrition and Menu Planning." Application to Child Nutrition Professionals: As the potential to integrate WBT into current educational offerings is further investigated, it is important to begin WBT module development with competency-based functional areas as prioritized by SNDs and to address perceived benefits and barriers during development, field testing, and marketing of WBT modules.
School Nutrition Association. 120 Waterfront Street Suite 300, National Harbor, MD 20745. Tel: 301-686-3100; Fax: 301-686-3115; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Adult Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: US Department of Agriculture, Food and Nutrition Service
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Colorado; Florida; Indiana; Louisiana; Michigan; Mississippi
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A