Development and Validation of a Tool to Measure Dietitians' Self-Efficacy with Using Mobile Health Apps in Dietetic Practice

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Abstract

Objective:

To develop and validate a tool for assessing dietitians' self-efficacy with using mobile health (mHealth) apps in dietetic practice.

Design and Participants:

A tool for measuring mHealth app self-efficacy among dietitians was constructed based on a literature review, consultation with experts, and Bandura's self-efficacy scales development guide. Senior dietetic students and new graduate dietitians in Australia (n = 100) tested the tool.

Outcome Measures and Analysis:

Validation of the tool was conducted using factor analysis. Reliability testing was undertaken to examine internal consistency and repeatability.

Results:

Construct validity was demonstrated through extraction of 4 factors with significant loadings accounting for 68% of variance: efficiency and effectiveness of nutrition care, training and support, integration into dietetic work systems, and familiarity with apps. Internal consistency reliability overall was 0.90; 3 of 4 constructs had Cronbach α > .70. Weighted kappas for test-retest reliability indicated moderate to substantial agreement (0.43–0.76).

Conclusions and Implications:

This tool will be useful to researchers and dietetic associations interested in measuring dietitians' levels of mHealth app self-efficacy, developing interventions to enhance self-efficacy, and/or evaluating changes in self-efficacy after professional training. Testing of the tool in a more diverse sample of dietitians and among other health professional groups could enhance the applicability of the tool.

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