Strategies for Educational Intervention of Chemical Warfare

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Name: Amanda Flagg

Rank: Maj, USAF

Organization: The Geneva Foundation

Performance Site: Kelly Air Force Base, San Antonio, TX; Lackland AFB, Wilford Hall Medical Center, San Antonio, TX

Year Published: 2002

Abstract Status: Initial

Abstract

Since September 11th, our nation's military and civilian population has never been at a higher risk for chemical exposure than now. Healthcare providers have little or no warfare content in their educational programs. To provide necessary care, these healthcare providers need to have cognitive and performance proficiency. The specific Aims of the study are as follows: 1) To develop valid and reliable instruments that measure perceptions, cognition and performance (Chemical Simulation Performance and Chemical Cognitive Knowledge Exam). 2) To determine which strategy (Human Patient Simulator Strategy [HPS] or CD-Rom) is more effective in increasing cognitive knowledge. 3) To determine which strategy (HPS or CD-Rom) is more effective in increasing advanced cognition. 4) To determine which strategy (HPS or CD- Rom) is more effective in increasing performance proficiency relative to chemical warfare patient situations. There are no valid and reliable instruments to measure the outcomes or the effectiveness of teaching strategies. Instruments developed in the proposed study can also be used in future studies that address the efficacy of specific teaching strategies.If the study shows that one of the approaches is more effective in increasing cognitive knowledge and performance proficiency, educators can then capitalize on this finding and implement that strategy to optimize learning. If the findings show that there are no differences in the strategies, researchers and educators then need to develop and test other teaching methods. For example, if the control/no intervention group performs the same as the other groups, a clear message to educators is that they need to refine, develop and test other methods. In summary, this study is highly innovative and most timely in that it will provide for valid and reliable instruments for measuring the effectiveness of state-of-art strategies. Also, the study will determine which strategy is most effective in the acquisition of cognitive knowledge and performance proficiency. Such findings are of paramount importance in providing effective educational preparation of the military's healthcare providers who in turn will give essential care to individuals exposed to chemical agents.