142nd APHA Annual Meeting and Exposition

Annual Meeting Recordings are now available for purchase

An Evaluation of the Effectiveness of GIS Training Workshops for Public Health Professionals and Community Partners

142nd APHA Annual Meeting and Exposition (November 15 - November 19, 2014): http://www.apha.org/events-and-meetings/annual
Tuesday, November 18, 2014 : 8:30 AM - 8:50 AM

David Padgett, PHD , History, Geography and Political Science, Tennessee State University, Nashville, TN
Lutheria Peters, BS , American Association of Medical Colleges, Washington, DC
Green A. Ekadi, PhD, MS , School of Graduate Studies and Research/MSPH Program, Meharry Medical College, Nashville, TN
William N. Washington, DPA, MPA, MPH, CHES , MSPH Program, Meharry Medical College, Nashville, TN
This presentation focuses upon an evaluation of the effectiveness of GIS training workshops for health professionals and community-based organizations working in medically under-served communities.  The nine workshops were hosted by Meharry Medical College from 2010-2013 at various times, and were developed and delivered by the Tennessee State University Director of the Geographic Information Sciences Laboratory.  The backgrounds of the approximately 120 attendees included Meharry MSPH students, college administrators, public health professionals, and non-profit organization workers.  Their ages ranged from late teens to early 70s.  The majority of the participants have little to no prior experience with GIS.  Computer literacy was not a prerequisite for the training, and as such, the participants' computer competency ranged widely. The objective is of this research is to evaluate how extensively past workshop participants are using GIS in their work and/or integrating GIS into their organizations at least six months post-workshop.  Past participants are asked to complete a survey instrument including both open-ended and Likert scale questions aimed at educing how much the workshops influenced their continued utilization of GIS, and if the workshops in some way motivated them to institutionalize use of geospatial technology in their public health-related work activities.  Preliminary results indicate that some participants have continued using GIS, others indicated in a pre-workshop questionnaire that their primary goal was to use GIS to complete a specific project at the time, with no plans for continued use.  A major goal of this project is to develop a training model that will increase applications of GIS in public health practice in general, and specifically in racial health disparities research.  Survey results will determine what portions of the training were most effective in creating persistent and capable GIS users, and  strategies for institutionalizing GIS within health organizations.

Learning Areas:

Conduct evaluation related to programs, research, and other areas of practice
Public health or related education
Public health or related research

Learning Objectives:
Evaluate the effectiveness of health-based GIS workshops for persons working in medically under-served communities Identify successful methods for institutionalizing GIS applications in public health organizations. Design a training model for successful GIS technology transfer to public health organizations

Keyword(s): Geographic Information Systems (GIS), Community-Based Health

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have served as a consultant for Meharry Medical College on applications of geographic information systems (GIS) technology in public health since 2006, funded in part by the US Dept of Health and Human Services.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.