An epistemological assessment of learning nutritional information with augmented reality

Publication Date01 April 2019
Date01 April 2019
AuthorLih-Juan ChanLin,Kung-Chi Chan,Chiao-Ru Wang
SubjectInformation & knowledge management,Information & communications technology,Internet
An epistemological assessment of
learning nutritional information
with augmented reality
Lih-Juan ChanLin
Library and Information Science, Fu-Jen Catholic University,
New Taipei, Taiwan, and
Kung-Chi Chan and Chiao-Ru Wang
Department of Food and Nutrition, Providence University, Taichung, Taiwan
Purpose This study aims to investigate whether epistemological assessment is a suitable approach to
evaluatestudentslearning of dietaryknowledge via the use of an augmented reality(AR) information system.
Studentsperceived dietary knowledge was compared before and after learning with the AR system. Two
major questionswere addressed: Did studentsimprove their understandingof dietary knowledge afterthe use
of AR informationsystem? Did students gain more appropriateunderstanding of dietary knowledgeafter the
use of AR informationsystem?
Design/methodology/approach A mixed-methods approach was usedin the study. The mobile AR
system was used among 65 volunteered non-nutrition-major college students recruited in campus. For
promoting epistemological development of personal dietary knowledge, students practiced with life
experiences to access daily dietary information. Pre- and post-tests of studentsunderstanding of dietary
knowledge were compared. Interviews with 20 students were used for gathering in-depth research data to
analyse studentsepistemological understandingof dietary knowledge.
Findings The epistemological assessment indicated an improvement in learning after the use of the AR
system. Students gradually gained awareness of dietary knowledge and changed their perceptions of their
dietary behaviours. Epistemological approaches to the analysis of studentsconceptual change in dietary
knowledge revealed a signicant increase in the mean nutritional concepts (p0.01) and a decrease in their
mean misconceptions (p0.001) after learning via the mobile nutrition monitoring system. Learning assessment
of 65 students also indicated a signicant increase from the post-test after learning with the system (p0.0001).
Research limitations/implications This study might have its limitations, as it only assessed
learning using a pretest-posttest design for a specic learning context over a short period of learning time.
The use of interviews basedon the epistemological approach might have its limitations in theinterpretations
of the phenomenon. Future implementationscan also be extended to different populations to promote self-
monitoringdietary behaviours.
Originality/value The ndings of this study will contribute to the application of AR in learning about
dietary knowledge. The research involving in-depth observation of studentslearning relevant to personal
nutritional information needs via mobile AR might provide potential contributions to dietitian
professionals and health education.
Keywords Mobile learning,Augmented reality,Exploratory learning, Dietaryhealth, Self-monitoring,
Paper type Research paper
This project was supported by the Ministry of Science and Technology at Taiwan. The authors
would like to express their appreciation for the generous sponsorship.
Received29 June 2018
Revised9 November 2018
6 January2019
Accepted11 February 2019
TheElectronic Library
Vol.37 No. 2, 2019
pp. 210-224
© Emerald Publishing Limited
DOI 10.1108/EL-06-2018-0128
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