Mahurin Honors College Capstone Experience/Thesis Projects


Kinesiology, Recreation, and Sport

Document Type



In the elderly, hip fractures from falls often result in decreased quality of life, independence, or functional mobility. Such injuries may lead to hospitalizations, skilled nursing facility admissions, and healthcare costs, yet can be minimized by addressing risk factors of falls. Health education models indicate that assessment of the target population is important prior to the development of an effective program. PURPOSE: To determine among rural adults self-identified learning needs, interest and preferences for fall injury prevention. METHODS: A survey was administered to senior citizens in a rural community. RESULTS: One hundred thirty (n= 130) older adults completed this survey. Paired t-tests and analysis of variance were conducted on demographic variables and perceived learning needs. Significant differences were found between 1) men and women in their interest in an instructional DVD (p = .047), 2) place of residence (rural vs. semi-rural) and preferred instructional method (p = .015), and 3) age groups in their preferences for internet instruction (p < .001), pamphlet instruction (p = .003), and highest educational level (p < .001), respectively. ANOVA revealed significant differences in perceptions in injury prevention education needs (p = .016) based upon educational level and preferred instructional method (p = .001). CONCLUSION: These results indicate that variables such as sex, place of residence, age, and educational level influence fall risk learning needs among rural adults. These findings suggest health care iii workers should consider such factors in their target population when developing community-based education programs for older adults.

Advisor(s) or Committee Chair

Dr. Scott Arnett


Medicine and Health Sciences