3262.1: Monday, November 13, 2000 - 9:09 PM

Abstract #15635

Is the Small Group Activity Method (SGAM) Conducive to Internet Training? Evaluation of an Innovative Approach to Environmental and Occupational Health Training in a Union Setting

Luis A. Vazquez, MPH1, Andrew J. Comai, MS1, Judith Daltuva, MSW, MA2, Pamela Vossenas, MPH1, and Thomas G. Robins, MD, MPH2. (1) UAW Health & Safety Department, UAW Health & Safety Department, 8000 East Jefferson Ave, Detroit, MI 48214, 313-926-5612, vazquezl@rust.net, (2) Department of Environment, Health , and Safety, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI 48109, (734) 936-0756, jdal@umich.edu

The International Union, United Automobile, Aerospace, and Agricultural Implement Workers of America (UAW) initiated a project to pilot worker training modules using "Advanced Training Technologies" under supplemental grant funding provided by NIEHS. Workers at high risk of exposure to hazardous chemicals, especially in small facilities that have fewer health and safety resources, are the project's focus. The objectives are to develop computer-based training curricula housed on a web page within the UAW's website, and to train UAW-represented employees and managers to access, interpret, and utilize computer databases and programs as a means of critically assessing industrial emergency response activities as part of problem solving strategies at their facilities. Health effects databases and spill modeling software will be accessed by workers during the training modules to investigate hazardous spill histories, EPA Risk Management Plans, environmental release profiles, and OSHA compliance records related to their plant. An integral part of the project is the evaluation component provided by the University of Michigan School of Public Health.

Findings to be reported include answers to the following questions: Can training on the internet be successfully achieved using the SGAM? Does the internet provide increased access to resources vs paper based ones? What impact on working conditions has the internet training module had? What barriers to utilization of internet resources by workers were identified?

A review of case studies of UAW members trained on the internet and working conditions at the plants that employed them will be included as part of the findings.

Learning Objectives: Participants will be able to identify the components necessary for successful internet training for small groups of workers. Participants will be able to list websites that workers will access to obtain occupational and environmental health information. Participants will recognize the value of including worker-trainers in the development, administration, and evaluation of the project

Keywords: Internet, Union

Presenting author's disclosure statement:
Organization/institution whose products or services will be discussed: UAW Health and Safety Department National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences University of Michigan School of Public Health
I do not have any significant financial interest/arrangement or affiliation with any organization/institution whose products or services are being discussed in this session.

The 128th Annual Meeting of APHA