5127.0 Occupational safety and health training: Is it effective? How would we Know?

Wednesday, October 29, 2008: 10:30 AM
Thirty-eight years into the modern OSHA era training remains one of the most common prescriptions for improving workplace safety and health. The OSHAct mandates employee training in many standards, and a sizeable training industry has developed around particular hazards and regulations. Numerous federal agencies have significant involvement and jurisdiction in OHS training including OSHA, MSHA, EPA, NIEHS, DOT, and NIOSH. This includes regulatory mandates, direct or contractual development and delivery of training programs, and research on training effectiveness (NIOSH). Fifteen years ago the literature on training effectiveness in OHS was extremely sparse. In recent years more published evidence on the efficacy of specific training programs and pedagogies has appeared. In particular the NIEHS Worker Education and Training Program has emphasized training quality and learner-centered pedagogy. However, a continuing challenge is that while many federally funded training programs require evaluation of effectiveness in their grants, rarely are sufficient resources provided to fulfill both training delivery and comprehensive evaluation. The themes of this session are: 1) With the massive OHS training infrastructure we have developed and the millions of dollars and hours spent in training, why don't we have a clearer idea of its impact? 2) Are there best practice models among the existing federal programs that should be more widely applied to get more from the overall investment in training? 3) What can OHS training programs learn from other public health training and education interventions 4) What can we do with existing resources to do more and better evaluations?
Session Objectives: Upon completion of this session, participants will be able to: * Describe the federal occupational health and safety (OHS) training infrastructure in the U.S. * Identify four barriers to evaluation of OHS training effectiveness * Articulate specific elements (best practices) of current federal training models that promote quality training * Discuss the feasibility of applying these best practices to other training programs.

See individual abstracts for presenting author's disclosure statement and author's information.

Organized by: Occupational Health and Safety
Endorsed by: School Health Education and Services