REPRESENTATION OF REAL SITUATIONS IN THE FIELD OF NUTRITION (DEGREE IN HUMAN NUTRITION AND DIETETICS)

Introduction: The process of integration in the European Space of Superior Education is carrying out important changes in the organization of the Spanish University studies and also in teaching. One of the main objectives is to elaborate new teaching planning that must be carried out taking as a reference the learning of the students. The most important thing is “what the student learns" rather than the time spent on this learning.

Objectives: The objective of this project is to motivate the students and to improve their possible weakness and insecurity in order to face their professional situation through the representation of situations and practical cases that they will have to face in their real life. Furthermore, we try to incorporate new technologies to reach.

Material and Method: During the course, we provide to the students (N= 40) an interactive CD in which they would learn the techniques of skinfolds, making records and dietary guidelines to follow. Once practices sessions were videotaped so that the students could then analyze their own performances. Besides, an application for iPhone operating system has been developed so that students learned how to use it as a work tool. Through this application, the students can see in this mobile phone their own nutritional diagnosis. The evaluation of the benefits of the program was carried out through questionnaire that the students had to fill individually. The questionnaire consisted of 27 item divided into 3 parts. Each question could be assessed from 1 (lowest mark) to 5 (highest mark).

Results: The part of “Academic Aspects” was globally assessed with a score of 4.17, the part of “In general, I am satisfied with the work carried out by the teacher(s)” was the best assessed item with 4.53, the underrated part was “The relationship between the theoretical and practical parts of the course have been adequate” with 3.95. The part of “Employee Resources” was globally assessed with 4.11, and the most prized item was “Simulation allows me to see mistakes that I had not see before” with 4.43. The worst assessed part was “The computing resources that have been used were necessary and sufficient” with 3.74. As for the part of “General Rating”, it was globally assessed with 4.29, and the most prized item was “Generally, I am satisfied with the training I have received in practice” with 4.38. The worst assessed was “In general, my expectations have been covered after having stared with the practice” with 4.20.

Conclusion: As several investigations have shown, there is an improvement when the learning is applied to practice rather than if the theory is explained separately. This means that students learn more through practical interventions rather than through the theoretical ones. These evidences are evaluated positively by students of the Degree in Human Nutrition and Dietetics as the results of the questionnaire show.