The Effect OF Learning Styles On The Use Of Health Education Materials In A Physical Activity Intervention Open Access

Sundland, Rachael Marie (2014)

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The Effect of Learning Styles on the Use of Health Education Materials in a Physical Activity Intervention

By: Rachael Sundland

Objective: The objective of this study was to evaluate the association between individuals learning styles and use of educational materials in the Physical Activities and Lifestyles Study (PALS) at Emory University.

Methods : Emory University employees (n = 410) from 60 departments were randomized into four treatment groups. This study utilized two treatment groups: Education+Gym and Education+Gym+Time groups (n=195, of whom 189 had information on educational material use). Participants filled out a Learning Style Inventory (Kolb, 1984) questionnaire and assessed the usefulness of educational materials provided. For this study, converging and assimilating learning styles were combined due to sparse data. This formed three levels of the exposure learning styles: Accommodating, Diverging, and Assimilating+Converging. There were eight educational materials provided to participants: an activity log-book, education booklet, emailed tips, gym brochure, mailed tips, walking groups, walking map, and website. In addition to assessing use of each educational material, the overall rating of the materials was also assessed. The outcomes were collapsed upon to form dichotomous variables, used versus not used. Using logistic regression the data was analyzed to determine if participants used the provided educational materials differentially based on the three types of learning styles.

Results: The covariate adjusted analyses showed only one significant association. The odds of those with an accommodating learning style using the activity log-book was 0.4 times (95% CI 0.2, 0.7) the odds of those with a diverging learning style using the activity log-book. The data was too sparse to model the association of learning styles with the emailed tips, gym brochure, mailed tips and overall use when controlling for the other covariates.

Conclusion: Learning styles may have an effect on the use of educational materials. Future studies should attempt to enroll larger populations and focus on examining the impact of learning styles on educational material use. These health education studies should explore the impacts of learning styles on technology use and provide data to ensure that, regardless of learning style, easily understood educational materials are being provided to all patients.

Table of Contents

Table of Contents:

1. Introduction...1

2. Background / Literature Review...7

3. Methods...13

4. Results...24

5. Discussion...29

6. References...35

7. Tables...38

8. Appendices...45

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