Developing and delivering food systems training programs for 21st century audiences

Troy Hahn, Patricia A. Curtis


Expectations for training programmes today are very different from expectations for training programmes in the past, because today’s audiences are not only multigenerational, but the younger generations learn in distinctly different ways from older, more traditional audiences. To meet the needs of these multigenerational audiences, the Auburn University Food Systems Institute (AUFSI) has developed on-demand, online courses that offer a variety of ways for learners to interact with training materials. For example, a typical course may offer not only traditional text, but audio, video, simulations, and more. In addition, AUFSI has developed supporting educational tools such as interactive virtual tours and video games. This approach to creating courses is a response to the  different levels of experiences of the generations as well as different expectations of how materials should be delivered. In order to be effective, training materials need to be designed to appeal to this multigenerational audience. Traditionalists (born before 1946) prefer face-to-face training programmes. Baby Boomers (born 1946-1964) are more accepting of technology. Generations X (born 1965-1980), Y (born 1981- 2000) and C (born after 2000), however, expect to receive training at their convenience, to have it delivered electronically, and to be entertained as well as educated.


training; distance education; e-learning; food safety education

Full Text:



  • There are currently no refbacks.