CCE Theses and Dissertations

An Investigation of Computer-based Training user Satisfaction, and Transfer of Knowledge in Industrial Safety Training

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Computing Technology in Education (DCTE)


Center for Computer and Information Sciences


Getrude W. Abramson

Committee Member

Gerorge K. Fornshell

Committee Member

Marlyn Kemper Littman


In this case study, computer-based safety training was explored in a food manufacturing environment to determine its feasibility as an effective method for training new employees, and retraining of employees annually. Gilardi Foods, Inc., a food manufacturer in Sidney, Ohio, was training employees using stand up, instructor led training techniques. The problem with this method was that it was impossible for the safety manager to complete training of all new employees because of high turnover in the manufacturing environment. Coupled with the fact that there are three manufacturing facilities spread over a wide area, it was impossible for one person to complete the training of new employees, let alone retrain current workers. Consequently, supervisors were required to complete training of employees. This created a problem for the supervisors who were supposed to oversee the activities of employees on the line and found it difficult to take the time to complete safety training.

Record keeping was another problem with this method of training. The safety department did not have the records necessary to document that training had been completed as required by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. An effective training program would provide the company with the records the company needed to satisfy government requirements. By using computer-based training (CBT), the management of Gilardi Foods hoped to show that they would be able to conduct safety-related training for all new employees before they were placed in hazardous situations. The company also wanted to complete annual refresher training of current employees. Another positive result that was hoped for by company management was accurate and timely records of a training provided, including scores from tests that showed that employees completing the training understood the material presented. Finally, management wanted to limit whenever possible the time that it took to complete the training in each module to one hour or less.

Since this was a case study, the research was conducted at the company site under the same conditions that employees would face on a day-to-day basis. The CBT was monitored by a company employee and the equipment, software, and other resources were provided by the company. Employee/trainees were requested to complete a pre-test, the computer-based training, post-test, and attitude survey during one session. The pre- and post-tests and the survey were used to test the hypothesis that CBT would effectively provide transfer of knowledge concerning safety and that trainees would show significant levels of satisfaction with the training provided. The time required to complete the materials was monitored to determine whether the computer-based safety training being presented could be completed within the one-hour time frame.

The results indicated a significant level of transfer of knowledge about safety issues through the use of CBT and a high level of user satisfaction with CBT. The management and staff of Gilardi Foods also indicated considerable satisfaction with the use of CBT to accomplish the goals for safety training in their environment.

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