Free Online Course for Assessing the Built Environment for Physical Activity

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September 26, 2012
By Chad Spoon
Free Online Course for Assessing the Built Environment for Physical Activity

The Built Environment Assessment Training (BEAT) Institute has launched a free online training course to learn how to assess the built environment for physical activity. Participants in the introductory course will learn how to assess streetscapes, parks, and trails for physical activity. The 4-hour course is geared towards anyone with an interest in learning how to conduct audits of the built environment.

Participants will learn about the main variables found in most physical activity-focused built environment audit tools. Participants will also learn how to customize the tools and train others to conduct assessments. The training course provides an in-depth look at a few specific Active Living Research funded tools:

  • Irvine Minnesota Inventory (IMI): Measures a wide range of built environment features that affect physical activity, especially walking. Covers four domains: accessibility, pleasurability, perceived safety from traffic, and perceived safety from crime.
  • Active Neighborhood Checklist (ANC): Observational tool designed to assess key street-level features of the neighborhood environment that are thought to be related to physical activity behavior.
  • Pedestrian Environment Data Scan Tools (PEDS): Measures environmental features that influence walking in varied environments in the US. Designed to specifically address pedestrian concerns as well as minimize cost and implementation time.
  • Physical Activity Resource Assessment Instrument (PARA): Documents and describes the type, features, amenities, quality and incivilities of a variety of physical activity resources.
  • Environmental Assessment of Public Recreation Spaces Tool (EAPRS): Observational assessment of the physical environments of parks and playgrounds, with an emphasis on evaluating physical elements and qualities with respect to their functionality or potential functionality (e.g., how a park or playground element is used or could be used by adults and children).
  • Path Environment Audit Tool (PEAT):  Assesses physical characteristics of community trails and paths, including design, amenity, and aesthetics/maintenance items.

 

Details on the training course can be found here. For those also interested in healthy eating, the BEAT Institute has a free online course for assessing the nutrition environment available at the same link.

Comments

Excellent work. I need to be trained.

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