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Abstract

Creative classroom techniques incorporating technology promote a more productive and enriched learning environment. Preparing future health educators in today’s technology-driven society requires faculty to adopt new teaching strategies which motivate and engage the new tech-savvy Web 2.0 generation. YouTube® is a popular online video-sharing web site for both scholarly and non-scholarly communication. Currently, there are no published studies on the quantitative assessment of faculty utilization of YouTube in the health education classroom. The purpose of this pilot study was to 1) determine faculty’s current and potential utilization of YouTube in their classes; 2) identify faculty perceptions of the benefits of YouTube as a health education resource for in-class and online courses; and 3) identify potential limitations and challenges of this online resource. Using an online survey instrument developed by the researchers and provided via a secured website, data were collected from a non-randomized convenience sample of 24 faculty members, obtained from a population of 59 full-time tenure-track and fixed-term health and human performance faculty teaching at a mid-size university in the southeastern U.S. The results indicated that, overall, the faculty who use YouTube in their courses consider it to be an effective teaching resource for enhancing their health education course material. In addition, the non-user faculty expressed interest in learning more about the potential application of YouTube as an instructional tool for their classes. While further research is necessary, this pilot study suggests that YouTube may be a viable, innovative teaching resource for use by university faculty in health education and other disciplines.

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