Computer-based learning for the enhancement of breastfeeding training
AbstractA great need exists for ongoing breastfeeding training. Students of today relate well to computers in the learning environment. In this study, computer-based learning (CBL) was explored in the context of breastfeeding training for undergraduate Dietetic students.
Aim: To adapt and validate an Indian computer-based undergraduate breastfeeding training module for use by South African undergraduate Dietetic students.
Methods and materials: The Indian module was adapted to suit the South African scenario and converted into low-bandwidth, interactive computer-based material. It was assessed for face and content validity by 19 peer reviewers and 17 third-year Stellenbosch University (SU) Dietetic student reviewers by means of self-administered questionnaires. Impact of the adapted module on knowledge was evaluated on second-year SU (n = 14) and University of the Western Cape (UWC) (n = 15) Dietetic students by means of pre- and post-knowledge tests.
Results: All reviewers rated their information technology (IT) skills as suffi cient and enjoyed the presentation mode of the adapted module. Student reviewers indicated that CBL was a “nice way of learning”, but requested that it should not be used as the sole source of instruction. Fifty three per cent (n = 19) of the reviewers rated CBL to be equally effective compared to conventional lectures, 36% (n = 13) rated it as being more effective and 11% (n = 4) as less effective. Pre- and post-knowledge test scores showed a signifi cant increase (SU p < 0.0001 and UWC p < 0.00115).
Conclusion: It is recommended that validated computer-based breastfeeding training modules be integrated as part of multi-media methods to increase coverage and enhance breastfeeding learning for undergraduate Dietetic students. Other students of health care professions and health care workers may also benefi t from such modules.
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