Information to fight the flab: findings from the Net.Weight study

MARSHALL, AUDREY, HENWOOD, FELICITY, Leslie, Carlin, GUY, ELIZABETH, Sinozic, Tanya and Smith, Helen (2009) Information to fight the flab: findings from the Net.Weight study Journal of Information Literacy, 3 (2). pp. 39-52. ISSN 1750-5968

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The purpose of the paper is to examine information use and information literacy in the context of weight management. It reports on a two-year study funded by the Department of Health known informally as the Net.Weight Study. Net.Weight examined the potential for increased, innovative and effective uses of information and communication technologies (ICTs) to support the self management of weight. The research was conducted in the city of Brighton and Hove by an inter-disciplinary team from the University of Brighton. The paper gives a brief overview of the various methods used in the study as a whole but discusses one strand, the user survey, in more detail. The survey gathered data on people’s information and ICT use around weight management. The design of the survey questionnaire required the adaptation of existing literacy assessment instruments and this process is described in this paper. The findings show that people use a wide range of information sources for information and support around weight management. The most useful sources are slimming groups, food packaging, friends and family, magazines, TV and health books, thus representing a variety of media, formal and informal, and including human sources. The internet was reported to be a useful source for around half the survey respondents and is most often used for information about diet and exercise. A majority of respondents described themselves as active information seekers and confident about their information skills. They are less confident about internet information than information generally and even less confident about using the internet to support weight management activities.

Item Type:Journal article
Additional Information:© The authors(s) and CILIP, Community Services Group, Information Literacy Group
Uncontrolled Keywords:Health information; information literacy; information sources; weight management; obesity; internet; self care
Subjects:L000 Social Sciences
L000 Social Sciences > L400 Social Policy
Faculties:Faculty of Health and Social Sciences > School of Applied Social Science > Health and Social Policy Research Centre
Faculty of Health and Social Sciences > School of Applied Social Science
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ID Code:7649
Deposited By:Converis
Deposited On:30 Sep 2010 10:43
Last Modified:09 Oct 2013 11:24

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