Pilot assessment of an experiential disaster communication curriculum

Daniela B. Friedman, India D. Rose, Alexis Koskan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

4 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Purpose: The purpose of this study is to assess the effectiveness of a disaster preparedness communication curriculum for public health graduate students' understanding and use of communication strategies for reaching vulnerable groups with preparedness messages. Design/methodology/approach: A training module was piloted in a health communication seminar in 2008 (n=9 students) and 2009 (n=15 students). The interactive module included lectures, videos, case study discussions, and disaster plan and message development. Students gave presentations to a panel of risk communication specialists from the university and state health department. Findings: Analysis of Likert-type pre/post-survey items showed significant improvement in students' knowledge about disaster communication and confidence regarding use of communication principles to develop clear messages (p&0.05). In response to open-ended questions, students reported enjoying the "practical experience of developing messages" and learning the "importance of media and health professionals working together". Research limitations/implications: This pilot evaluation involved a relatively small sample of students. Although students were assured that all survey responses would remain anonymous, social desirability may have played a role in their written responses. Practical implications: The educational module appears to be effective in engaging public health students in disaster communication strategies for reaching vulnerable populations. Studying effective communication strategies well before a disaster situation occurs will help to anticipate community-specific communication needs and reduce concern. Originality/value: The instructional approach and content developed could be adapted for training health care and public health professionals to communicate effectively in planning for and responding to disaster situations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)238-250
Number of pages13
JournalDisaster Prevention and Management
Volume20
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 1 2011
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Disasters
curriculum
Curriculum
disaster
student
Communication
communication
Students
Public Health Students
public health
health professionals
Health Communication
Social Desirability
Disaster
Health
risk communication
Vulnerable Populations
social desirability
health
health care

Keywords

  • Disaster preparedness
  • Graduates
  • Health and risk communication
  • Information strategy
  • Public health
  • Risk management
  • United States of America

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business, Management and Accounting (miscellaneous)
  • Health(social science)
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

Cite this

Pilot assessment of an experiential disaster communication curriculum. / Friedman, Daniela B.; Rose, India D.; Koskan, Alexis.

In: Disaster Prevention and Management, Vol. 20, No. 3, 01.06.2011, p. 238-250.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Friedman, Daniela B. ; Rose, India D. ; Koskan, Alexis. / Pilot assessment of an experiential disaster communication curriculum. In: Disaster Prevention and Management. 2011 ; Vol. 20, No. 3. pp. 238-250.
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