Increasing Learning Potential in Entry Level Nutrition Students through Online Tutorial

  •  April Litchford    
  •  Heidi Wengreen    


The objective of this study was to assess whether implementation of an online tutoring program, MasteringNutrition©, would produce measurable gains in student learning outcomes. Research conducted by Pearson©, the creator of MasteringNutrition©, indicates that the inclusion of Mastering© tutoring programs into existing courses has the ability to increase student performance on assessments and total course grades. Students of a general education, nutrition course were invited to participate in this study: spring of 2013 (no Mastering; n=182), fall of 2013 (Mastering; n=86), and spring of 2014 (Mastering; n=410). NDFS 1020 is an introductory nutrition course taught in a blended style. Course structure includes course lectures (60% of instruction time) and online assignments (40% of instruction time), Mastering© is included as part of required assignments. Learning outcome progress was measured by questions on a pre-semester quiz, final exam, and posttest six months after course completion. Assessments measured student progress based on course learning objectives. Results of statistical tests reported no significant difference in test scores for each group over time. Students who scored lower than the mean on the pretest and used the Mastering© program demonstrated greater improvements in final and posttest scores compared to those who scored higher than the mean on the pretest (p=<.001). Implementation of online tutoring program did not significantly improve overall student outcomes. Online tutorial programs may be helpful for students who are enrolled in courses where they have little prior knowledge of subject matter.


This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
  • ISSN(Print): 1927-0526
  • ISSN(Online): 1927-0534
  • Started: 2011
  • Frequency: semiannual

Journal Metrics

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1. Google-based Impact Factor (2021): 1.11
2. h-index (December 2021): 29
3. i10-index (December 2021): 87
4. h5-index (December 2021): N/A
5. h5-median (December 2021): N/A