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Adv Physiol Educ. 2007 Mar;31(1):67-75.

Design guidelines for the development of digital nutrigenomics learning material for heterogeneous target groups.

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Nutrition, Metabolism, and Genomics Group, Division of Human Nutrition, Wageningen University, Wageningen, The Netherlands.


Nutritional genomics, or nutrigenomics, can be considered as the combination of molecular nutrition and genomics. Students who attend courses in nutrigenomics differ with respect to their prior knowledge. This study describes digital nutrigenomics learning material suitable for students from various backgrounds and provides design guidelines for the development of the learning material. These design guidelines, derived from theories on cognitive science and instructional design, describe the selection of interaction types for learning tasks and the timing of information presentation. The learning material supports two learning goals: 1) the formulation of meaningful research questions in the field of nutrigenomics and 2) the development of feasible experiments to answer these questions. The learning material consists of two cases built around important nutrigenomics topics: 1) personalized diets and 2) the role of free fatty acids in the regulation of hepatic gene transcription. Each case consists of several activities to promote active learning by the student. Evaluation of the cases in a realistic academic educational setting indicates that the cases were useful.

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