Abstract

OBJECTIVE. We attempted to determine whether multimedia fall prevention education using different instructional strategies increases older adults’ knowledge of fall threats and their fall prevention behaviors.

METHOD. Fifty-three community-dwelling older adults were randomized to two educational groups or a control group. Multimedia-based educational interventions to increase fall threats knowledge and encourage fall prevention behaviors had two tailoring strategies: (1) improve content realism for individual learners (authenticity group) and (2) highlight program goals and benefits while using participants’ content selections (motivation group). Knowledge was measured at baseline and 1-mo follow-up. Participants recorded prevention behaviors for 1 mo.

RESULTS. Intervention group participants showed greater knowledge gains and posttest knowledge than did control group participants. The motivation group engaged in more prevention behaviors over 1 mo than did the other groups.

CONCLUSION. Tailoring fall prevention education by addressing authenticity and motivation successfully improved fall threats knowledge. Combining motivational strategies with multimedia education increased the effectiveness of the intervention in encouraging fall prevention behaviors.

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