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Youth Understanding of Foodborne Illness

Computer-Based Resources for Science Classrooms and Informal Learning Settings


As a result of this integrated research, education and Extension effort, youth will engage in behavior that prevents food borne illness.


  • Investigate the food handling responsibilities and obstacles to adopting safe food handling behavior encountered by middle school consumers, including knowledge of foodborne disease and preventative behaviors, psychosocial factors (i.e., attitudes, locus of control, self-efficacy), and self-reported food handling procedures.
  • Develop recommendations for educational and behavioral objectives for development of new materials based on research findings.
  • Develop learning tools that meet food safety educational behavioral objectives and national science standards for use in middle school science classrooms. These learning tools, such as games and interactive programs, will address national science standards and have supplemental learning guides to assist teachers or Extension educators in using educational programs in formal learning environments.
  • Conduct formative evaluation of learning tools throughout the development process conduct and summative evaluation of competed materials in two geographic regions of the nation, developing recommendations for national distribution.


Key Project Team Members

Rutgers University

  • Carol Byrd-Bredbenner, Ph.D., RD
  • Donald Schaffner, Ph.D.
  • Jackie Maurer Abbot, Ph.D., RD

New Mexico State University

  • Barbara Chamberlin, Ph.D.
  • Jeanne Gleason, Ph.D.

Funding Source

  • USDA National Food Safety Initiative: 2007-2010