I continue to find myself chasing technology, both professionally and personally. Of course, I’m of the generation that remembers physically punching cards for computer data analysis, printers that had little holes on each side so that the continuous feed worked, and traveling with back-up overhead transparencies in case the computer didn’t work. I try to keep up, but really there are probably 10 new technology advances that affect me every day.
I am really pleased that SNEB has a growing Technology Division that supports our membership in technology training, communication, and research. In addition, the Journal Club focused this fall on technology. If you missed a webinar, they are recorded and members can listen at their pleasure.
In one such webinar, Haar discusses her paper that focuses on how technology can foster a sense of community in nutrition courses. On my “to do” list is learning to teach online. I use a learning management system very superficially for face-to-face coursees. Dr. Haar describes a much more engaging use of learning management systems that I am eager to try. Moving outside the formal classroom, Chlipalski et al describe a video-based online training addressing prenatal nutrition education for paraprofessional peer educators. The video-based online training was efficient and effective, leading the way for additional training topics.
I also have to admit that I have not used clickers in the classroom, although I believe it is a way to attract the students’ attention and get some feedback on their thoughts. Indeed, JNEB has published at least four articles about the use of clickers. While Gould discusses the potential use of clickers in the classroom, Gray et al and Koch et al use clickers within their research working with school-children. Sounds like a much more efficient data collection technique.
Although not part of the Journal Club series as yet, Katsagoni et al describe their research examining schoolteachers’ nutrition knowledge, beliefs, and attitudes before and after an e-learning program in Greece involving more than 600 teachers. In addition to being potentially more engaging, on-demand, less costly, and lower teacher burden, I feel this study demonstrated that technology also can help us reach larger audiences.
I suppose there will always be outdated technology about which we can chuckle. The challenge is to stay in the technology race so that we can advance our teaching reach, engagement, and efficiency. I hope to see more nutrition education technology opportunities at the next annual conference and as submissions to JNEB.
Karen Chapman-Novakofski, PhD, RDN, is the Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior’s editor-in-chief. This editorial originally appeared in JNEB Vol. 51, Issue 10 (November – December 2019).